Ray Dalio, the founder of Bridgewater Associates, the world’s largest hedge fund, sees the power and influence artificial intelligence has had on society and thinks it’s just as much “part of the whole evolutionary process” as any new technological invention, he said during an onstage interview at the Fortune Global Forum in Abu Dhabi yesterday (Nov. 29).
The billionaire investor believes we are in a critical moment of global economic history. Just as the industrial revolution created tools that significantly reduced the need for human labor in agriculture, Dalio said A.I. will change how we think and process information—hopefully for the better.
“It is archaic for people to think the decision making just in your head is going to be good,” Dalio told Fortune editor-in-chief Alan Murray in the interview. “There has to be a partnership between what’s in your head and what the computer does, because it’s so powerful in some many other ways.”
He added that, while investors will naturally start pouring funding into companies developing A.I. technology, the real value will come from businesses that effectively use it. “They’re the ones that are going to create the transformations,” Dalio said.
Dalio has a “five-force” framework that he uses to analyze global economy and technology is one of them. When asked if the economic benefits of new technology would outweigh the potential consequences of an economic slowdown in the coming years coupled with growing geopolitical risks, Dalio said it depends on how well the people and leaders of the world can collaborate. He also encouraged others to broaden their economic understanding beyond a U.S. perspective.
“I come back to this basic notion: you need to be together, you need to be civil,” Dalio said, “When I look back at this global setting, I’m looking at the places that are financially sound, work well together and raise their kids to be civil.”
The world’s largest hedge fund, Bridgewater manages over $124 billion in assets. Dalio himself is estimated to be worth $15.4 billion, according to Forbes. The Dalio Family Office, his personal investment firm, opened a new office in Abu Dhabi in April. The family office opened a branch in Singapore in 2020.