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Artificial Intelligence: maximising opportunities, minimising risks

We advocate for responsible policies that will ensure everyone can share in its benefits. The potential of AI to change societies and economies is extraordinary.

Future of work

Economists disagree over whether AI-fuelled automation will destroy more jobs than it creates. But one thing is very clear: considerable disruption is coming and it will hit distinct people and places very differently. Politicians, businesses, and individuals need smart strategies to respond.

AI in low- and middle-income countries:

Lots of work has been done on the impact of AI in high-income countries, but people are only just starting to grapple with the effects AI will have on the economies, politics, and societies of lower-income countries. Technologists need to understand the challenges on the ground, rather than falling in love with their own solutions, if the huge positive potential of AI is to be realised.

AI and healthcare:

Investment is flooding into AI and healthcare, with applications involving image recognition (like radiology and eye scans) being the most developed. This is an area where the impact of AI could be overwhelmingly positive, but it does raise fascinating and important new ethical questions.

AI and data governance:

The extraordinary recent advances in AI are inextricably linked with the explosion in data available for AI to crunch. Concerns about privacy, bias, and accountability are coming to the fore as increasingly sophisticated analysis of our personal data is applied to an ever-widening range of decisions made about us.

Very impressive, thorough and thought-provoking document on AI.
– Stephen Fry

Publications

Ethical, Social, and Political Challenges of Artificial Intelligence in Health

Future Advocacy was commissioned by the Wellcome Trust to look at the ethical, social, and political implications of the use of AI in health and medical research. We wanted to go beyond issues that have already been identified, such as those around the use of patient data and algorithmic transparency, to explore whether these new technologies throw up new ethical issues, or challenge existing ethical principles in new ways. The Wellcome Trust is using the findings to inform future funding programmes.

Date of publication: April 2018

Ethical, Social, and Political Challenges of Artificial Intelligence in Health

Future Advocacy was commissioned by the Wellcome Trust to look at the ethical, social, and political implications of the use of AI in health and medical research. We wanted to go beyond issues that have already been identified, such as those around the use of patient data and algorithmic transparency, to explore whether these new technologies throw up new ethical issues, or challenge existing ethical principles in new ways. The Wellcome Trust is using the findings to inform future funding programmes.

Date of publication: April 2018

The Impact of AI in UK Constituencies

This report predicted job losses due to AI-fuelled automation in individual parliamentary constituencies.  It suggests that the highest numbers of jobs at risk of automation will be in former industrial heartlands such as the North of England and Midlands.  Despite these predictions, our YouGov online poll revealed that only 7% of UK adults are worried that their current job role will be replaced by AI.

The report received widespread media coverage in the BBC, FT, Telegraph and more, and attracted significant political attention.

Date of publication: October 2017

The Impact of AI in UK Constituencies

This report predicted job losses due to AI-fuelled automation in individual parliamentary constituencies.  It suggests that the highest numbers of jobs at risk of automation will be in former industrial heartlands such as the North of England and Midlands.  Despite these predictions, our YouGov online poll revealed that only 7% of UK adults are worried that their current job role will be replaced by AI.

The report received widespread media coverage in the BBC, FT, Telegraph and more, and attracted significant political attention.

Date of publication: October 2017

Artificial Intelligence

The Road Ahead In Low- And Middle-Income Countries

We were commissioned by Tim Berners-Lee’s Web Foundation to write this paper on artificial intelligence as part of their series on examining key digital trends in low- and middle-income countries.  These countries are all too often overlooked in debates around the impacts of emerging technologies. By conducting extensive research and speaking to over 40 experts in more than 15 different countries, we identified both issues that these countries have in common with advanced economies, as well as certain highly-specific challenges that emerging economies face. We made 10 recommendations for maximising the opportunities and minimising the risks of artificial intelligence in low- and middle-income countries.

Date of publication: July 2017

Artificial Intelligence

The Road Ahead In Low- And Middle-Income Countries

We were commissioned by Tim Berners-Lee’s Web Foundation to write this paper on artificial intelligence as part of their series on examining key digital trends in low- and middle-income countries.  These countries are all too often overlooked in debates around the impacts of emerging technologies. By conducting extensive research and speaking to over 40 experts in more than 15 different countries, we identified both issues that these countries have in common with advanced economies, as well as certain highly-specific challenges that emerging economies face. We made 10 recommendations for maximising the opportunities and minimising the risks of artificial intelligence in low- and middle-income countries.

Date of publication: July 2017

An Intelligent Future?

We are in the early stages of an intelligence revolution.

Artificial intelligence (AI) already permeates many aspects of our lives. AI systems trade on the stock market, filter our email spam, recommend things for us to buy, navigate driverless cars, and in some places can determine whether you are paid a visit by the police. The fast-moving development of AI presents huge economic and social opportunities. It will also bring significant risks. This report makes specific recommendations to the UK Government on what they should do.

Date of publication: October 2016

An Intelligent Future?

We are in the early stages of an intelligence revolution.

Artificial intelligence (AI) already permeates many aspects of our lives. AI systems trade on the stock market, filter our email spam, recommend things for us to buy, navigate driverless cars, and in some places can determine whether you are paid a visit by the police. The fast-moving development of AI presents huge economic and social opportunities. It will also bring significant risks. This report makes specific recommendations to the UK Government on what they should do.

Date of publication: October 2016

You Gov Poll 2017

Events

PAST EVENT October 27th, 2017

Stars of AI: Max Tegmark

Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence

5.30 – 6.00pm: Keynote speech – Max Tegmark (Future of Life Institute)
6.00 – 6.30pm: Q&A with Olly Buston (Future Advocacy)
6.30 – 7.00pm: Prize awarded to the daughter and grandson of Vasili Arkhipov
7.00 – 10.00pm: Reception with AI art, drinks and nibbles

PAST EVENT October 25th, 2016

An Intelligent Future?

Maximising the opportunities and minimising the risks of artificial intelligence in the UK

6.30 – 7.00pm: Keynote speech – Murray Shanahan (Imperial College London)
7.00 – 8.00pm: Panel Discussion with Kenn Cukier (The Economist), Kay Firth-Butterfield (GIECDAS), Murray Shanahan (Imperial College London) and Anne-Marie Imafidon (STEMettes)
8.00pm: Food and drinks reception with AI beer, art, music, poetry and a drone demonstration

PAST EVENT September 13th, 2017

Artificial Intelligence in low- and middle-income countries

A round-table discussion, co-organised with the Web Foundation and the Centre for Global Development

We hosted a roundtable to discuss the implications of our recent work on the economic, social, and political impacts of AI in low- and middle-income countries. Attended by more than 25 experts in AI and international development, and featuring a videolink with Kathleen Siminyu, an AI developer in Kenya, we discussed how best to take forward our work on maximising the opportunities and minimising the risks of artificial intelligence.