D’une révolution avortée à une autre? Les politiques québécoises en nanotechnologies et en IA au prisme de l’économie de la promesse

This article aims to analyze the Quebec government’s policies on nanotechnologies in the early 2000s and on artificial intelligence (AI) from the mid-2000s on. The comparison between the past fervor for nanotechnologies and the present fervor for AI reveals a number of similarities between the public actions implemented to bring out and develop these two state-of-the-art technologies. In both cases, we show from the perspective of the so-called promise economy how different stakeholders are building and promoting an inescapable technological and economic future in order to gain political support, secure wider social approval for their projects and, above all, capture important public financial and material resources that are essential for establishing industrial and commercial activity. The case of nanotechnology, for which we now have more hindsight, makes it possible to assess the gap between initial promises and what actually happened. It also provides food for thought to critically address the current government support for AI and the discourse on its future economic benefits in Quebec.

This content has been updated on 5 May 2021 at 14 h 38 min.