IGF Roundtable on Artificial Intelligence and Governance

Following our global roundtable on AI and Trust at the 39th International Conference of Data Protection and Privacy Commissioners (ICDPPC) in Hong Kong, we convened one on AI and Governance at IGF 2017, Geneva.

This 90 minute session featured a keynote by scholar and practitioner, Dr. Nathan J. Matias, using practical applications in machine learning to trigger an interactive discussion on beneficial AI. Respondents from industry, academia and civil society were in conversation with Dr. Matias about approaches to accountability and impact in their respective domains and geographies.

Talk abstract:

Testing the Social Impact and Side-Effects of AI-Based Policy Enforcement

Machine learning systems are quickly becoming a basic tool for online governance of terrorism, mental health risks, nonconsensual imagery, and copyright. Yet AI-based enforcement has a history of scaling digital exclusion, chilling protected speech, and perhaps even increasing the harmful behavior it is designed to reduce.

How can we discover beneficial uses of machine learning in online governance while developing democratic accountability for algorithmic governance of our private and public lives? In this talk, Dr. J. Nathan Matias will share evidence-based approaches to testing the social impact of AI-based governance, methods for holding AI governance accountable, and open a conversation on the future of evidence-based policy and consumer protection online.

About J. Nathan Matias

J. Nathan Matias (@natematias) does research for a fairer, safer, more understanding internet through large-scale citizen behavioral science. He is founder of the CivilServant nonprofit and a post-doc at Princeton University in Psychology, the Center for IT Policy, and Sociology.

In 2017, Nathan completed his Ph.D. at the MIT Media Lab on the governance of human and machine behavior in an experimenting society (video) (thesis). His recent research has focused on preventing harassment, broadening gender diversity on social media, responding to human/algorithmic misinformation, and auditing social technologies.

Before MIT, Nathan worked in tech startups, helped start a series of education and journalistic charities, and studied postcolonial literature at the University of Cambridge and Elizabethtown College. His writings have appeared in The Atlantic, PBS, the Guardian, and other international media.

The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) 

The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) serves to bring people together from various stakeholder groups as equals, in discussions on public policy issues relating to the Internet. While there is no negotiated outcome, the IGF informs and inspires those with policy-making power in both the public and private sectors.  At their annual meeting delegates discuss, exchange information and share good practices with each other. The IGF facilitates a common understanding of how to maximize Internet opportunities and address risks and challenges that arise.