This IDC TechScape aims to help government executives identify the potential benefits and challenges of adopting robotics technology. This is a new area of interest in many government domains, from defense and intelligence, to public safety, agricultural and environmental protection, and public transport. The objective of this study is to highlight opportunities and risks, so that executives can start to consider robots in their long-term capital investment road maps as a safe and more efficient method of mission delivery. The potential to apply autonomous or semi-autonomous machines to enhance the safety, precision, and efficiency of government services — particularly in defense and intelligence, public safety, surveying, and inspection — is significant. However, the early stages of research around the full automation of task control capabilities, battery life, the ethical and legal concerns, and budgetary constraints make the prospect of widespread deployment of robotics in government distant in time.
"Governments will start to include in their technology road maps key milestones of collaboration with academia and industry, and continue to invest in R&D to build robots that — in 15–20 years — can step into a world built for humans and perform a variety of tasks, from routine to life-saving, in dangerous and hazardous situations," said Massimiliano Claps, research director, IDC Government Insights.
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