News Story

Exploring AI, Ethics, and Law: Insights from the OU Artificial Intelligence Event

Nancy Pontika, Friday 12 Jul 2024

The OU’s newly created AI Steering Group recently ran its first official event titled “AI, Ethics and Law – your questions answered” which was very successful with 315 attendees and 200 questions submitted. The event had three main parts and was supported by two KMi staff. 

Introduction – What is AI and Why It’s a Big Deal

The event kicked off and was hosted by John Domingue who is the Community Engagement lead on the AI Steering Group. In the introduction he gave a brief overview of what AI is, how it is ubiquitous today, the underlying machinery, and gave some examples of how it is being explored across the OU. John emphasized the rapid advancements in AI technology and its profound implications for society, from enhancing productivity to raising new ethical and legal challenges.

The AI Steering Group and How You Can Engage with Their Work

David Hayes, Chief Data Officer and Chair of the AI Steering Group, followed with an overview of the AI Steering Group’s mission and activities. Hayes discussed the group’s role in guiding AI research and implementation at the OU, ensuring that AI development aligns with ethical standards and regulatory requirements. He also encouraged attendees to engage with the steering group’s work, highlighting opportunities for collaboration and input from the wider community.

AI, Ethics, and Law: Panel Presentation and Conversation

The core of the event was a panel presentation and conversation featuring distinguished experts who delved into the regulatory and ethical considerations surrounding AI and was comprised of the following OU staff:

Rebecca Ward, Data Protection Officer

Chris Wigglesworth, Chief Information Security Officer

Guy Lavender, Head of Intellectual Property

Tracie Farrell, Research Fellow in KMi

Tracie was invited onto the panel because she leads the prestigious UK Future Leaders Project Shifting Power which investigates AI and ethics.

Closing Remarks

The event concluded with closing remarks from John Domingue, who reiterated the importance of ongoing dialogue and collaboration in addressing the ethical and legal challenges posed by AI. 

The event underscored the critical need for interdisciplinary discussions as this radically transformative technology continues to evolve. By bringing together experts in data protection, information security, intellectual property, and ethics, the OU provided a platform for addressing the multifaceted challenges of AI. As AI technology advances, such conversations will be essential in shaping a future where AI is developed and deployed responsibly and ethically at the OU and beyond.

Related links:


Shifting Power

How can we create a more just society with AI?

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