Societal implications of quantum technologies through a technocriticism of quantum key distribution

Sarah Young, Catherine F. Brooks, Jason Pridmore

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Advancement in quantum networking is becoming increasingly more sophisticated, with some arguing that a working quantum network may be reached by 2030. Just how these networks can and will come to be is still a work in progress, including how communications within those networks will be secured. While debates about the development of quantum networking often focus on technical specifications, less is written about their social impacts and the myriad of ways individuals can engage in conversations about quantum technologies, especially in non-technical ways. Spaces for legal, humanist or behavioral scholars to weigh in on the impacts of this emerging capability do exist, and using the example of criticism of the quantum protocol quantum key distribution (QKD), this paper illustrates five entry points for non-technical experts to help technical, practical, and scholarly communities prepare for the anticipated quantum revolution. Selecting QKD as an area of critique was chosen due to its established position as an application of quantum properties that reaches beyond theoretical applications.

Original languageEnglish
JournalFirst Monday
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 9 Mar 2024

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