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A vision for a responsible metaverse

Ethical AI and xReality strategies for the C-suite

The next technology age, powered by the spatial web and artificial intelligence (AI), is upon us. But past advances have often led to unintended consequences for individuals, society, and the environment. Can we learn from past mistakes? Discover how executives can lay the foundation for a responsible metaverse that prioritizes well-being, privacy, and sustainability.

Confronting the ethical issues of xReality, AI, and the metaverse

Widespread digitization of human intelligence and the physical world is driving seminal shifts in how people create, interact with each other, and experience the world. While the vision of an online world indistinguishable from the physical world may be years away, the outlines of where we are headed are visible today.

Deloitte refers to this next revolution of the internet as Unlimited Reality (xReality), which represents a convergence of shifting behavior and several technologies rapidly maturing for mainstream use, including AI, augmented reality/virtual reality (AR/VR) devices, 3D rendering, Internet of Things (IoT), blockchain, digital assets, and advances in connectivity and computing power.

And, much like the introduction of the internet, social media, and smartphones, the age of xReality generates new opportunity to create value—as well as harm.

The responsible metaverse imperative



of the world’s population is online


of American Millennials and Gen Z connect in video games and social media as much as the real world


of people worldwide are predicted to spend at least 1 hour per day in xReality experiences by 2026




The C-suite’s role in developing responsible xReality and AI strategies

CEOs should learn from some of the missteps from companies that drove the last wave of technological disruption and sponsor development of responsible xReality strategies now.

Those that do could expect to benefit from new sources of competitive advantage: premium pricing, greater brand trust, and improved operational efficiency.

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Align the leadership team

Assemble a diverse leadership team with deep understanding of the technological, societal, and business implications of xReality to help define the organization’s strategy and align priorities.


Articulate a responsible vision

Consider the organization’s purpose, mission, and values. Horizon scanning across a set of potential scenarios is a great place to start.


Prioritize value-added use cases

Lead with human behavior and needs. Learn from past lessons and future scenarios to uncover opportunities while understanding potential risks. Include plans for how guiding principles will be infused into what is being built and how.


Establish responsible guardrails

Establish cross-functional governance and feedback loops to monitor ongoing activity and escalate issues. Determine the right operational tactics such as metrics and incentives, including executive compensation, as well as processes and tools to align desired outcomes internally and externally.

Executives have an opportunity (and responsibility) to design metaverse strategies that center on societal impact

In xReality, online experiences, powered by AI, are expected to become more integrated, immersive, and energy intensive. Fundamental shifts in behavior and technology, as well as regulation, are expected to disrupt current business models. Harmful behavior and potential unintended consequences to individuals, society, and environment will likely increase in frequency and complexity. Executives across every industry should be prepared with a strategy to navigate AI and xReality responsibly.

Organizations that do not should expect to face the loss of stakeholder trust, billions of dollars in fines, and increased media and regulatory scrutiny that many technology companies are already facing today. Beyond that, organizations may face disruption or even obsolescence.

Dive deep into the case for responsibility with the full report.

  • Learn from unintended consequences of past technological advancements.
  • Explore how to develop business strategies and capture opportunity responsibly.
  • Get started to evolve toward a more responsible internet.

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