House of Lords says AI so crucial, special Summer enquiry needed

New peers’ AI Committee wants to hear evidence from experts and practitioners by the 6th September – just two weeks before the Think AI For Public Sector conference opens its doors

Posted 26 July 2017 at 9:10am by

The House of Lords has just launched the first public enquiry on Artificial Intelligence (AI) and what it could mean for the UK.

So important is the issue deemed by the upper Chamber that a special new Committee has been set up – The Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence.

The enquiry will focus on “the economic, ethical, and social implications of advances in artificial intelligence”, and the peers want to hear testimony by September 6 on such core issues as:

  • The current state of AI
  • The pace of technological change and the development of artificial intelligence
  • The impact of artificial intelligence on society
  • The public perception of artificial intelligence
  • The sectors most, and least likely, to benefit from artificial intelligence
  • The data-based monopolies of some large corporations
  • The ethical implications of artificial intelligence
  • The role of the Government and
  • The work of other countries or international organisations.

“This inquiry comes at a time when artificial intelligence is increasingly seizing the attention of industry, policymakers and the general public,” noted Lord Clement-Jones, the Committee’s chair.

“We are looking to be pragmatic in our approach, and want to make sure our recommendations to government and others will be practical and sensible.”

Labour lords Clive Hollick and Dame Joan Bakewell, “Third Way” guru Anthony Giddens, the Lord Bishop of Oxford, and science writer and columnist Matt Ridley are all members of the Committee.

The issues the Lords plan to tackle will also be the centrepiece of Think AI For Public Sector, a special one-day conference dedicated to seeing if AI offers the potential to make government more efficient and improve the delivery of services to the public.

Think AI For Public Sector could therefore be of big interest to IT and policymakers throughout the public sector who want to understand more about the challenges and opportunities AI will bring, both in terms of technical deployment and political/societal governance. 

Set for Wednesday, September 20, the conference is FREE for qualified members of the public sector, but to secure your place check out the full agenda and register your attendance here, as space is limited.