Exploring the future of AI with Irina Mirkina, AI Lead, Office of Innovation, UNICEF

Posted by World Summit AI on Oct 3, 2023 2:08:52 PM
World Summit AI

Ahead of World Summit AI (11th-12th October 2023, Taets Art & Event Park, Amsterdam), we asked Irina Mirkina, AI Lead, Office of Innovation, UNICEF, her thoughts on the future of AI.

As an expert in the field, what critical challenges do you believe the AI community needs to address to ensure responsible & and ethical AI deployment?

One of the main challenges is the complexity of AI development across borders and across the global value chains. Data collected in one country may be used, labelled, processed in other countries - and it's hard to ensure the data privacy and ethical AI development if AI laws in all those countries are different. Many extremely popular products (including generative AI systems) have been accused of disregarding human rights. Examples include using digital sweatshops with poor working conditions for data labelling and violating the creators' right to work. If such questionable practices happen at one end of a global value chain while the value is extracted at the other end, regulating AI on a global scale becomes extremely challenging.

How has AI impacted your specific field of expertise, and what transformative changes do you foresee in the near future?
Children's rights are affected by AI technologies on an unprecedented scale. Some of this impact has been extremely positive: AI tools are helping in humanitarian work, health, education to save children's lives, provide them with better and equitable access to healthcare, and give them skills for the future. But AI also presents numerous risks that are even higher for children than for adults, particularly when it comes to bias in AI systems, privacy violations, growing digital divide, deep fakes, and misinformation. The transformational change that I'd like to see would include the development of legal regulations that address the ethics and impact of AI on children.
What measures do you believe should be taken to bridge the AI research gap between developed and developing nations to ensure equitable technological progress?
We need to support the development of open-source AI and AI systems as digital public goods. This would improve equitable access to technology, improve the development of representative, unbiased, equitable datasets for training and testing of AI systems, support fair and just value distribution (as opposed to value extraction), and help building local technological capacity and digital skills across the world.

Global AI events calendar

World Summit AI 
11-12 October 2023
Amsterdam, Netherlands
World AI Week 
9-13 October 2023
Amsterdam, Netherlands
World Summit AI Americas
24-25 April 2024
Montréal, Canada
Intelligent Health
11-12 September 2024
Basel, Switzerland
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