BBC World Service

Science & Medicine

Technological and digital news from around the world.


The Industries of the Future

February 23rd, 2016

Episode 76 of 112 episodes

While Alec Ross was working as Senior Advisor for Innovation to the US Secretary of State, he travelled to forty-one countries, exploring the latest advances coming out of every continent. From start-up hubs in Kenya to R&D labs in South Korea, Ross has seen what the future holds. In The Industries of the Future, Ross explores the changes that may be coming – with special emphasis on robotics, cybersecurity, and the commercialization of genomics. PARO the Therapeutic Robot PARO the seal-like robot is on trial in a hospital and dementia day centre in New Zealand as a comforter for elderly residents. Simon Morton visits a home and talks to some of the residents, carers, a health psychologist from the University of Auckland. The Ethics of Carebots The philosopher and Executive Board member of the Foundation for Responsible Robotics, Shannon Vallor, discusses the ethics of using robots to care for human beings. Bat-flight Inspired MAVs Scientists have developed a bat-inspired membrane for use in Micro air vehicles that changes shape in order to improve performance. Click talks to Professor Rafael Palacios. (Photo caption: Alec Ross Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for The New York Times) Producer: Colin Grant