Cambridge Analytica: What role for the University as researcher at centre of scandal admits ‘I should have questioned the ethics of the exercise’?

While Aleksandr Kogan says he is being unfairly scapegoated by Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, the researcher at the heart of the data harvesting scandal admits that he could have asked more questions before conducting the research. The Guardian and CNN are reporting this week that Kogan, a researcher affiliated with Cambridge University, claims he was … Continue reading "Cambridge Analytica: What role for the University as researcher at centre of scandal admits ‘I should have questioned the ethics of the exercise’?"

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Gap widening between tech firms and the public interest – Canadian policymakers start to act

Policymakers in Canada are beginning to move on concerns about the growing distance between AI tech development and public interest. A number of initiatives are in motion to identify the problems, but we are still a long way off solving them. The gap became starkly evident this week as Elon Musk announced that he was … Continue reading "Gap widening between tech firms and the public interest – Canadian policymakers start to act"

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A Hippocratic Oath for coders? New book from Microsoft looks to future of AI ethics

A Hippocratic Oath for coders? New book from Microsoft looks to future of AI ethics A horizon-scanning exercise by two leading Microsoft executives has taken shape in a new book, The Future Computed, available for download this week. Published by Microsoft, with a foreword by Brad Smith, Microsoft president and chief legal officer, and Harry Shum, … Continue reading "A Hippocratic Oath for coders? New book from Microsoft looks to future of AI ethics"

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Line-up takes shape for inaugural Artificial Intelligence, Ethics and Society Conference in New Orleans

The 2018 Artificial Intelligence, Ethics and Society Conference will take place in New Orleans on February 2/3. The conference will bring together experts in  ethics, philosophy, law, economics, sociology, history and politics from around the world, to discuss the impact of AI on society in fields including workplace displacement, data handling and bias, and value … Continue reading "Line-up takes shape for inaugural Artificial Intelligence, Ethics and Society Conference in New Orleans"

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Case Study: Automated video caption development- should researchers anonymise human images before publication?

Project Title: TrecVid 2017 Project Description: TrecVid is an ongoing video-to-text caption generation task. This international project has been running since 2001, and each year different research groups around the world are given a TRECVid task. In this case study, the approach to the project was to extract keyframes from short videos (Vines) and to … Continue reading "Case Study: Automated video caption development- should researchers anonymise human images before publication?"

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Academics ‘asleep at the wheel’ on tech ethics writes Cathy O’Neil in the New York Times

    The time has come for the establishment of an institute of algorithmic accountability, author and data scientist Cathy O’Neil writes in the New York Times this month. It is her contention that the wider academic community is ‘asleep at the wheel’ when it comes to examining and critiquing the ethics if technology currently … Continue reading "Academics ‘asleep at the wheel’ on tech ethics writes Cathy O’Neil in the New York Times"

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Brain-Computer Interface – four ethical priorities from the Morningside Group

The Morningside Group is a collaboration of neuroscientists, neurotechnologists, clinicians, ethicists and machine-intelligence engineers. It includes representatives from Google and Kernel (a neurotechnology start-up in Los Angeles, California); from international brain projects; and from research centres in the United States, Canada, Europe, Israel, China, Japan and Australia. Last May the group gathered at a NSF-sponsored … Continue reading "Brain-Computer Interface – four ethical priorities from the Morningside Group"

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AI ethics a ‘baseline safety issue’ – new report essential reading for data researchers

Kate Crawford and Meredith Whittaker of New York University have this week published a thirty page report on ethics in the AI industry that raises the bar on data ethics discourse and makes solid recommendations for the sector. These include the eradication of black box algorithms in high stakes domains such ​​ as criminal​ ​justice … Continue reading "AI ethics a ‘baseline safety issue’ – new report essential reading for data researchers"

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Is it too late for Big Data Ethics? Kalev Leetaru muses in Forbes

One of the issues that arises again and again when discussing ethics with data researchers is this: where along the research timeline should ethical investigation be introduced? The obvious answer is at the beginning. Often, however, a post-research ethical audit is conducted that gives projects the veneer of ethical responsibility with no actual impact on … Continue reading "Is it too late for Big Data Ethics? Kalev Leetaru muses in Forbes"

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As ‘Smart Cities’ turn from blueprint to reality, what about smart ethics to guide developers?

This week a Canadian government agency called Waterfront Toronto launched a plan with Sidewalk Labs, an offshoot of Google’s parent company Alphabet, for a smart neighbourhood in a 12-acre urban plot. Sidewalk Labs has a stated aim of building communities ‘from the Internet up’, and this new project promises to redevelop the Toronto Quayside district … Continue reading "As ‘Smart Cities’ turn from blueprint to reality, what about smart ethics to guide developers?"

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