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New humanities-led network will put social justice at the heart of AI research


New humanities-led network will put social justice at the heart of AI research

UKRI’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) have launched JUST AI, a network of researchers and practitioners, in partnership with The Ada Lovelace Institute, that will establish a multidisciplinary research base around ‘just AI’ - AI that is ethical, works for the common good and is effectively governed and regulated.

The humanities-led network will build on research in AI ethics, orienting it around practical issues of social justice, distribution, governance and design, and seek to inform the development of policy and practice.

The JUST AI network will connect researchers and practitioners from across philosophy, law, media and communications, human-computer interaction, ethnography, user-centred design, data science, computer sciences and social sciences. It will begin by mapping the landscape and identifying opportunities to join up research across disciplines. It will deliver a programme of activity to include workshops, written and creative outputs and peer-reviewed articles, and lay the foundations for future multidisciplinary research collaborations. 

Professor Edward Harcourt, Director of Research, Strategy & Innovation at UKRI Arts & Humanities Research Council said:

“There is no doubt that the development and use of Artificial Intelligence has the potential to transform our lives but in order for society to use and benefit from it, we need to be assured that AI technologies are being developed and deployed in responsible and ethical ways. This network is a vital step in the right direction towards achieving that, integrating expertise from across to understand and challenge the ethical and social risks and impacts of data and AI.”

Carly Kind, Director of the Ada Lovelace Institute said:

“The JUST AI network will help ensure the development and deployment of AI and data-driven technologies serves the common good by connecting research on technical solutions with understanding of social and ethical values and impact.

“We are pleased to be working in partnership with the AHRC and with Dr Alison Powell, whose expertise in the interrelationships between people, technology and ethics make her the ideal candidate to lead the JUST AI network.”

The JUST AI network is one of many new and exciting projects within UKRI’s growing AI portfolio. Some of the work UKRI is doing around AI will be on display at this year’s American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Seattle where we are showcasing a series of AI-related research and innovation from across the UK. You can read more about UKRI’s AI investments and presence at AAAS, here: https://www.ukri.org/aaas/

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