AI & Society Workshops

Indigenous Protocol & AI

Mar. 1-2, 2019 | Honolulu, United States
May 26-June 1, 2019 | Honolulu, United States


Participants from the Indigenous Protocol and AI workshop.

How do we broaden discussions about the role of technology in society, and how can these conversations be informed by Indigenous knowledge and culture? These workshops brought Indigenous ways of making and maintaining relationships with human and non-human kin to bear on the question of how to build ethical relationships with AI. Workshop participants come from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, including machine learning, design, symbolic systems, cognition and computation, visual/performing arts, philosophy, linguistics, anthropology, and sociology.

Leadership Team:
Jason Edward Lewis, Concordia University, Canada; Angie Abdilla, Old Ways. New. Indigenous Knowledge Consulting, Australia; ʻŌiwi Parker Jones, Oxford University, United Kingdom; Fox Harrell, MIT, United States

Workshop Outcomes: The workshop team published a position paper on Indigenous Protocol and artificial intelligence. The paper is a starting place for those who want to design and create AI from an ethical position that centers Indigenous concerns.

Generation AI

Generation AI: Establishing Global Standards for Children and AI 
May 6-7, 2019 | San Francisco, United States

Though children comprise one-third of the world’s internet users, online algorithms have not been constructed to consider this especially vulnerable population, particularly those exposed to high levels of poverty and inequality. These workshops will bring together an interdisciplinary team from machine learning, pediatrics, psychology, and cultural anthropology as well as proposed collaborators in educational technology, communication sciences, and computational biology. They will focus on AI as a potential amplifier of inequality and inform a research policy, and communication agenda that will bring these issues to the forefront of scientific, policy, legal, and public discussions.

Generation AI: Wearables, Mental Health and Child Development
Oct. 15-16, 2019 | Toronto, Canada

The increasing use of digital technology in adolescence is occurring at a time in their development when teens are experiencing changes in social motivation and sensitivity to social evaluation and belonging. This can enhance the vulnerabilities of the teen years. While technology can exacerbate risks of social isolation, exclusion or bullying, it also presents an opportunity to promote positive social and emotional experiences. Investment in the research, development and application of online algorithms, tools and platforms that focus on technology use during this period of life can lead to positive population health outcomes, and mitigate the potential for growing inequalities between different sociodemographic groups.  

Leadership Team: Candice Odgers, University of California Irvine, United States; Anna Goldenberg, University of Toronto, Canada; Ronald Dahl, University of California Berkeley, United States; Mizuko Ito, University of California Irvine, United States

Workshop Brief: Generation AI: Establishing Global Standards for Children and AI
Workshop Brief: Generation AI: Wearables, Mental Health and Child Development

Workshop Outcomes:
Panicking about your kids' phones? New research says don't (The New York Times)

Fairness, Interpretability & Privacy for Algorithmic Systems*

June 3-4, 2019 | London, United Kingdom

Addressing themes of AI safety and privacy, this workshop proposes to investigate how algorithms in consumer services can be ethically and safely deployed. The research agenda was informed by the perspectives of lawyers, ethicists, and technology experts, and transcends national and disciplinary boundaries.

Leadership Team: 

Adrian Weller, The Alan Turing Institute, United Kingdom; Nozha Boujemaa, INRIA, France; Jonathan Schaeffer, University of Alberta, Canada

AI-Powered Information Ecosystems & Democracy

June 27-28, 2019 | Montreal, Canada

The potential risks AI poses to democratic institutions are not well-understood, in part due to the tension between potential benefits and harms to society. This workshop will engage diverse groups of researchers from academia and industry with practitioners and civil society representatives, to encourage collaborations between those developing tools and those with expertise in policy, civil rights, and democratic values.

Leadership Team:
Derek A. S. Ruths, McGill University, Canada; Seda Guerses, University of Leuven, Belgium; Alexandra Olteanu, Microsoft Research, United States; Joris Hoboken, Vrije Universiteit Brussels and University of Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Workshop Brief: AI-Powered Information Ecosystems & Democracy

Regulation of Defense and Security AI Technologies: Options Beyond Traditional Arms Control

July 15-16, 2019 | Toronto, Canada
Jan. 30-31, 2020 | Santa Monica, United States


Participants at the Regulation of defense and security AI technologies workshop discuss arms control in the age of AI

Debates about AI arms control have focused predominantly on autonomous weapons systems, been aimed principally to determine whether a total ban is appropriate, and took place in the UN Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons, a traditional arms control setting. The workshops brought together AI technologists, arms control practitioners and researchers, and other experts in regulatory and control regimes to develop a better understanding of arms control in the age of AI.

Leadership Team:
Kerstin Vignard, UN Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR), Switzerland; David Danks, Carnegie Mellon University, United States; Amb (ret.) Paul Meyer, Simon Fraser University, Canada; Giacomo Persi Paoli, UNIDIR, Switzerland

Workshop Brief: Regulation of Defense and Security AI Technologies: Options Beyond Traditional Arms Control
Workshop Brief: Regulation of Defense and Security AT Technologies: Regulatory Options for AI Technologies 
Workshop Outcomes: Modernizing Arms Control

Sustainability in the Digital Age*

Sept. 18-20, 2019 | Montréal, Canada


Participants at the Sustainability in the Digital Age workshop

At the intersection of technology, sustainability, and policy there is tremendous potential to identify levers of systemic change to lead society down a globally sustainable path. This workshop aims to identify opportunities where powerful technologies like AI can be applied, with the insights of a multidisciplinary team, to target climate change, while understanding the ethical implications of these AI levers and the connections that define global systems of production, consumption, and organization.

Leadership Team:
Amy Luers, FutureEarth, Canada; Mathilde Mougeot, École Nationale Supérieure d’Informatique pour l’Industrie et l'Entreprise (ENSIIE), France; Lyse Langlois, Université Laval, Canada; Sana Khareghani, Office for Artificial Intelligence UK, United Kingdom

Workshop Brief: Sustainability in the Digital Age

Workshop Outcomes:

Ethical Futures & AI Medicine*

Sept. 25-26, 2019 | Coventry, United Kingdom

As AI technologies gain wider adoption in the healthcare sector, greater consideration must be given to the ethical and societal implications of how the work of doctors will be disrupted. This workshop will investigate how AI assistance may affect our understanding of the practice of medicine, particularly the impact of AI on core professional values, the professional roles of doctors, and the future of healthcare services.

Leadership Team:
Heather Draper, University of Warwick, United Kingdom; Lisa Schwartz, McMaster University, Canada; Daniel Racoceanu, Sorbonne University, France; Wendy Rogers, Macquarie University, Australia

AI, Recommendations & the Curation of Culture*

Oct. 4-5, 2019 | Paris, France

Cultural goods worldwide are now distributed algorithmically through digital recommendation systems, but the impact this has on how society consumes and produces cultural goods — such as music, film, and books — is unclear. This workshop addresses how the application of these algorithms to consumer services affects how society will curate, create and consume these goods, and how policies might influence this technology on an international scale.

Leadership Team:
Ashton Anderson, University of Toronto, Canada; Georgina Born, Oxford University, United Kingdom; Fernando Diaz, Microsoft Research, Canada; Jeremy Morris, University of Wisconsin-Madison, United States

Workshop Brief: AI, Recommendations & the Curation of Culture

Rethinking Cultural & Ethical Issues in AI*

Oct. 28, 2019 | Paris, France

Given the effect of AI and other technologies on social dynamics and human interactions, this workshop investigates how the development of AI affects cultural diversity and expression, the nature of AI’s impact on ethnic, gender, and socio-cultural discrimination, and potential governance options to preserve diversity and human rights.

Leadership Team:
Marie-Hélène Parizeau, Université Laval, Canada; Vanessa Nurock, Université de Paris 8, France; Raja Chatila, Université Sorbonne, France; Véronique Guèvremont, Université Laval, Canada

AI & Future Arctic Conflicts*

Date TBD | Ottawa, Canada

The Arctic environment is changing: sea ice is melting, glaciers are retreating, and permafrost is thawing. As climates shift, new reserves of natural resources will emerge, complicating existing geopolitical dynamics and leading to potential conflicts over these environments. This workshop will analyse the role of AI in potential scenarios of such global conflicts, and the policy, ethical, and legal challenges that may arise from them.

Leadership Team:
Stephanie Carvin, Carleton University, Canada; Klaus Dodds, Royal Holloway University of London, United Kingdom; Patrick Lin, California Polytechnic University, United States; Fritz Allhoff, Western Michigan University, United States

AI & Health Care: A Workshop For the Fusion of Law & Science*

Date TBD | Ottawa, Canada

A workshop for the Fusion of Law & Science: Current legal and regulatory medical regimes — protecting patient safety and privacy — were developed in an era of medicine that is rapidly falling out of memory. The goal of this workshop is to explore existing safety and privacy laws surrounding AI health technologies from ethical, legal, and regulatory perspectives.

Leadership Team: Colleen Flood, University of Ottawa, Canada; Ian Kerr (until 2019), University of Ottawa, Canada; Joelle Pineau, McGill University, Canada; Céline Castets-Renard, Université Toulouse Capitole, France

Trust in AI Systems*

Date TBD | London, United Kingdom

Trust is a complex and multifaceted construct that plays a fundamental role in the deployment and acceptance of AI technologies. The proposed workshop aims to initiate efforts towards gaining a broader understanding of how factors such as application domain and user differences come into play to create trustworthy AI systems that empower their users to understand when the system’s actions are valuable and should be accepted, but also when they have limitations.

Leadership Team:
Cristina Conati, University of British Columbia, Canada; Elisabeth Andre, Augsburg University, Germany; Kaska Porayska-Pomsta, University College London, United Kingdom; Judy Kay, University of Sydney, Australia

*Led by CIFAR in partnership with the French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) and UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). These workshops included at least two researchers from Canada, France and the UK on the Leadership Team.