UNCTAD eWeek 2023 | Bottom-up AI and the right to be humanly imperfect 

From concerns about bias and representation to the cautious integration of AI in political spheres, these insights signify the pivotal considerations shaping the ethical evolution of AI in political contexts and beyond.

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The UNCTAD eWeek 2023 session ‘Bottom-up AI and the right to be humanly imperfect.‘ offered an in-depth examination of the far-reaching impact of AI, spanning its transformative potential across industries and the intricate dynamics entwined with its integration into education and political decision-making processes. Discussions within the panel unveiled insights that emphasized the significance of transparency, inclusivity, and a measured approach to integration, unveiling the complex tapestry of AI technology and its interface with evolving political landscapes.

AI’s impact across industries

Jovan Kurbalija highlighted the remarkable ability of AI to discern complex patterns within vast datasets, leading to accurate predictions across diverse sectors like healthcare, finance, and transportation. He emphasized the necessity of avoiding monopolization in AI development by fostering open-source models, promoting collaboration, and preventing the stifling of innovation by large corporations.

Ownership and provenance of AI knowledge

Kurbalija stressed the importance of clearly attributing AI knowledge sources, advocating for transparency and shared ownership. He illustrated this with Diplo’s utilization of AI for teaching, emphasizing the need to acknowledge AI knowledge sources to maintain fairness and transparency.

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AI in education: Balancing benefits and concerns

While highlighting AI’s positive impact on individual learning by aiding in understanding complex subjects, Kurbalija cautioned against the potential ban of AI in education. Instead, he advocated leveraging AI as a valuable tool to enhance the learning process, urging the promotion of critical thinking within academic institutions alongside its use.


Challenges in political decision-making with AI integration

Kurbalija cautioned against excessive computerization of political processes, emphasizing the inherently human aspect of politics. He highlighted the need for careful integration of AI as a tool in political decision-making to maintain integrity and preserve the human touch in these processes.

Outsourcing information and institutional thinking

Yung-Hsuan Wu deliberated on the debate surrounding the outsourcing of crucial information to third-party tools. While acknowledging the efficiency of such tools, concerns were raised about the potential loss of control over interpretation and the emphasis placed on certain details. The discussion underscored the significance of institutional thinking, highlighting its role in strengthening decision-making within institutes.

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