Regulating New Technologies In The Digital Economy: When And How?
According to Klaus Schwab, the transformation of the analog to digital world is what constitutes the 4th Industrial Revolution. For the author, the main characteristics of this social transformation are its speed, breadth and depth and systemic impact - which, after all, changes not only what and how we do things, but also who we are. The advancement of technologies will increasingly demand that the State be aware of the changes that occur in society: the 4th Industrial Revolution is underway and that means a transition towards new systems built under the influence of the digital revolution. In view of this constant technological progress, how will the State adapt to this new reality?
The Law, as a regulatory instrument for different sorts of relations in society, is obliged to act in this environment. However, new technologies require a new perspective from regulators and from the legal doctrine, as they do not fit into the traditional categories of Law. It is necessary to rethink the economic regulation that is linked to the territorial aspect, since globalization has already evidenced the crisis of the state model. In this perspective, the regulatory aspects that link the cross-border flow of information and trade in services require a thorough review to establish a more convenient and responsible format to face the disruptive impact of the development of new technologies, both in guaranteeing the fundamental rights of citizens, see the provision of public services, such as the stability of trade and diplomatic relations between nations.
Therefore, it is necessary that the Law evolve symbiotically with technology, so that it does not only modify the behavior of society, but so that it can also modernize the existent legal structure. This is, therefore, the rationale that must guide the legal perspective - and, in this case, in particular, that of the regulator – to the current technological environment.
This paper intends to discuss the matter of the 4th Industrial Revolution in regard of the effects of digital economy in today’s society. The biggest problem the study seeks to address is how regulators must face the continuous process of technological advance. To do that, its proposed to discuss to main questions: when to regulate new technologies and when to regulate them. The conclusion has a positive takeout. If planned, the gathering of data and information in different sectors of the economy affected by the revolution of technology could help facilitating the regulators’ work.