Artificial intelligence: SPOTLIGHT ON PEOPLE AND SOCIETY

How can the potential of artificial intelligence be maximized for the benefit of society while minimizing risks as effectively as possible? This question is at the heart of the 2024 focus topic of the German Centres for Research and Innovation (DWIH), explored within their global network.

The advancement of artificial intelligence is progressing swiftly. With the remarkable success of foundational models like ChatGPT, the technology has transcended niche applications and entered the everyday lives of numerous individuals. Such transformative power necessitates thoughtful consideration of both the potential and challenges inherent in this technology.

International research collaborations, such as those facilitated by the German Centres for Research and Innovation, play a crucial role in this context. Artificial intelligence offers diverse applications to address local challenges in the countries where the DWIH operate—whether it’s adapting to climate change, optimizing traffic management, alleviating pressure on healthcare systems, or reshaping education to navigate crisis situations. Simultaneously, it is imperative to establish a global consensus on the risks and limitations associated with this technology.

Broad Spectrum of AI Research

The network of German Centres for Research and Innovation uniquely provides the invaluable combination of local expertise and global dialogue. It was only natural, then, for the DWIH Board of Trustees to once again prioritise AI as a key technology, following its focus in 2019.

This decision aligns seamlessly with the DWIH’s commitment to comprehensively cover the spectrum of the AI debate through a diverse array of dialogue sessions and events. Encompassing specific potential applications across various industries, the discussions will also delve into overarching issues such as governance, geopolitical challenges, and the potential impact of AI on human and fundamental rights.

Visit the DWIH network website for further insights into the rationale behind the DWIH’s focus topic for 2024.

New York stands as one of the world’s foremost innovation hubs, a status that extends to the field of artificial intelligence. The city hosts numerous distinguished universities, companies, and organizations actively engaged in AI labs and projects. Notable examples include the Center for Data Science and the AI Now Institute at New York University, the IBM Watson Research Centre, and Cornell Tech – the graduate campus affiliated with the eponymous university. Residents of the city already experience the integration of artificial intelligence across various sectors.

As a global epicenter for finance, fashion, and media, New York accommodates a diverse range of industries that significantly benefit from the application of artificial intelligence. Furthermore, serving as a hotspot for tech start-ups, investors, and major tech companies, New York is positioned among the international pioneers in the exploration and development of this pivotal technology.

Development of Inclusive AI Solutions

Another aspect that uniquely positions the city for the adoption of innovative AI applications is its unparalleled diversity. New York is not only one of the largest metropolises globally but also one of the most culturally diverse. With over three million immigrants from around the world, the city boasts a linguistic landscape encompassing hundreds of languages. Over half of its residents are women, and nearly one million New Yorkers identify as having a disability. This diversity presents unparalleled opportunities for the development of fair and inclusive AI solutions, a demand that experts are increasingly emphasizing.

This distinctive aspect will be highlighted by the DWIH New York as part of the 2024 focus topic. The objective is to foster a meaningful dialogue between research and industry on a pivotal issue: How can we effectively harness the advantages of transformative technology while protecting ourselves from its (unintended) negative consequences? In this context, how can we guarantee the sustainability of artificial intelligence?