The purpose of this dinner debate is to reflect on both sides of Robotics, the benefits and possibilities on the one hand and the risks and threats on the other hand. During this dinner debate we aim to achieve a balance between these two sides.

Robotic technology is a very powerful tool, especially with the continuous improvement of the internal Artificial Intelligence algorithms. Robots can help address the UN sustainable development goals (i.e. building infrastructure) and will benefit a lot of people.

However, as a society we should be aware of ‘the winner takes all’ effect and the high concentration of power in the hands of a few. There is an economic risk for regions that “fall behind”. Therefore, strong investments are required in research and tech transfer (e.g. innovation hubs). At the same time, there are risks regarding unethical or evil use of that concentrated power, requiring investment in research of the ethical issues, especially towards test and experiment possibilities (e.g. living labs, field labs) in order to bring this new technology into society.