The intersection of geopolitics and technological innovations: implications for the Central-European region

Bánkuty-Balogh, Lilla Sarolta (2024) The intersection of geopolitics and technological innovations: implications for the Central-European region. PhD thesis, Budapesti Corvinus Egyetem, Nemzetközi Kapcsolatok és Politikatudományi Doktori Iskola. DOI

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The thesis examines the effects of emerging technological innovations shaping contemporary geopolitics, through their impact on the economy, society, and international relations, with special focus on Hungary and the Central European region. It explores how modern geopolitical theories have evolved over the years and what leading scholars have proposed with regards to the phenomenon of innovation and emerging technologies. The thesis is an article-based dissertation, which includes three published scientific journal articles, that analyse specific findings on subtopics related to the broader scheme of geopolitics and innovation, such as China’s growth prospects in the Fourth Industrial Revolution; the phenomenon of disinformation warfare aided by novel technologies in the Central European region; and the potential of Artificial Intelligence (AI) solutions disrupting industries, and creating economic and social inequalities examined in the Hungarian context. The study wishes to make a contribution to the existing body of research by delving into a contemporary and relatively under-explored topic, offering a consistent theoretical and conceptual foundation and applying an innovative research approach. The thesis finds that there is a need to adapt geopolitical narratives to reflect a world system that is moving away from the traditional model of exclusive state actors and is characterised by global interconnectedness and the advancement of technology. The findings of the individual articles in the thesis suggest that this transformation will fundamentally change the way society lives, works, and progresses, and that those who are able to embrace the change will prosper. The relevance of the theoretical ambition of the thesis can be described as the significance of emerging technologies from a geopolitical viewpoint, due to these technologies’ potential to shape the future of international relations and the global economy. Emerging technologies, such as artificial intelligence, big data, the internet of things, or blockchain have the ability to revolutionise industries and change the balance of power among nations, impacting the geopolitical landscape in the coming years. They are essential from a strategic planning and policymaking perspective, because they influence the economic and social development of nations and their relations with one another. Article 1 examines China's growth prospects and competitiveness in the shift in production technologies, known as the Fourth Industrial Revolution or Industry 4.0. The main research question is whether China can emerge as the primary global beneficiary of the transformation of production technologies. Article 2 examines the use of strategic narratives in disinformation campaigns targeting the Visegrád Group (V4). The analysis identifies constructed identity claims and positions on specific issues that seek to shape perceptions and actions of domestic and international audiences, and finds that the use of artificial intelligence, machine learning, and big data analytics is making computational propaganda more sophisticated and effective. Article 3 discusses the potential impact of artificial intelligence (AI) solutions as a general-purpose technology (GPT) on the competitiveness of countries and their likely impact on the labour market. The primary research question is whether the transformation of AI will lead to a more efficient and equitable distribution of wealth and development or whether it will extrapolate disparities between and within countries. The thesis contributes to the existing body of research as it (1) explores a contemporary topic that will gain increasing attention in the coming years, and as of today is still relatively under-researched; (2) provides a synthesising framework on relevant theories and concepts from classical to modern geopolitics, that can support further research in the area; (3) performs analysis related to Hungary and the wider Central European region on the topic of emerging technologies and geopolitics; (4) utilises a novel research method within the social sciences, by applying a natural language processing (NLP) algorithm in one of the articles.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD thesis)
Supervisor:Garaczi Imre, Banai Ádám
Subjects:Knowledge economy, innovation
International relations
ID Code:1321
Date:11 March 2024
Deposited On:05 Oct 2023 13:52
Last Modified:09 Apr 2024 13:23

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