Digital Catapult establishes Ethics Committee to help translate responsible AI theory into practice.

London 9 July 2018 – Digital Catapult launches the Machine Intelligence Garage Ethics Committee, an independent body dedicated to realising responsible artificial intelligence (AI) development in the UK.

The responsible use of algorithms and data is paramount for the sustainable development of machine intelligence applications, as concluded by the recent House of Lords Artificial Intelligence Committee report [1] . However, at present, there is a gap between theory and practice, between the ‘what’ of responsible AI and the ‘how’. There is demand from all sizes of organisation for help on defining and applying ethical standards in practice.

The Machine Intelligence Garage Ethics Committee, chaired by Luciano Floridi, Professor of Philosophy and Ethics of Information & Digital Ethics Lab Director at University of Oxford, will convene some of the foremost minds in AI and data ethics to address this need. It will comprise two elements: the Steering Group, who will oversee the development of principles and tools to facilitate responsible AI in practice, and the Working Group, who will work closely with startups developing their propositions through Digital Catapult’s Machine Intelligence Garage programme.

While the programme itself provides access to expertise and computational power, the Working Group’s collaboration with Machine Intelligence Garage startups will ensure that the Committee’s work is tested and grounded in practice.

Now convened, the Machine Intelligence Garage Ethics Committee will begin work refining its guiding principles for responsible AI development, enabling companies to evaluate their work for risks, benefits, compliance with data and privacy legislation and social impact and inclusiveness among other criteria. The first working principles will be delivered in September 2018.

The Committee welcomes feedback and opportunities for collaboration. Contact us at hello@migarage.ai 

[1]  “AI in the UK: ready, willing and able?”

Key Activities of the Working Group:

  • Lead an initial workshop to establish the principles for the Committee work
  • Participate twice a year in half day roundtable discussions to establish and keep the principles for the Committee work updated
  • Assess applications of Machine Intelligence Garage companies

Key Activities of the Steering Board:

  • Provide mentoring and advice for the operation of the ethics committee working group
  • Participate twice a year in half day roundtable discussions to establish and keep the principles for the Committee work updated

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