Jason Pontin is the editor-in-chief and publisher of MIT Technology Review. His 2014 TED Talk is titled: Can technology solve our big problems? (10/4/2014). Examples of really big problems include: global warming; an increasing shortage of fresh water; sustainability; worldwide poverty, hunger, disease, and education; and war and terrorism.
Here is Pontin’s summary of four conditions that he argues must all be present if technology is going to help solve really big problems in a top-down manner: