The Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund aims to support global efforts to “[advance] the development of ethical AI in the public interest,” and specifically in areas of education and applied research. Kicked off by tech heavyweights and other philanthropists, the fund has raised $27 million to date but is looking to grow, and has already partnered with researchers at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society the MIT Media Lab, two of the nation’s top institutions for the study of AI.
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It’s not the only partnership of this type: In January, the MIT Media Lab and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University announced the Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund, which will use $27 million to fund work that “advances the development of ethical AI in the public interest.” The White House also released two reports at the end of 2016 exploring AI’s impact on the workforce, and the role of government in its development and implementation.
The researchers are well credentialed. According to her bio, Mary L. Gray is a Fellow at Harvard University’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society. She is also a senior researcher at Microsoft Research, New England, and maintains a faculty position at Indiana University. Siddharth Suri is a senior researcher at Microsoft Research, New York City.
Rather than being at the behest of tech giants, the newly formed Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund – headed up by Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society and the MIT Media Lab – will pool together the collective insights of social scientists, ethicists, philosophers, faith leaders, economists, lawyers, and policymakers.
The Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society at Harvard University and the MIT Media Lab will serve as the founding anchor institutions for a new initiative aimed at bridging the gap between the humanities, the social sciences, and computing by addressing the global challenges of artificial intelligence from a multidisciplinary perspective.
Awards will be made from the fund to support a global cross-section of research aimed at applying the humanities, social sciences and other disciplines to the development of AI for the public interest. The MIT Media Lab and Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society will serve as the initiative’s founding academic institutions.
The MIT Media Lab and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University will serve as founding academic institutions for the initiative, which will be named the Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund. The Fund will support a cross-section of AI ethics and governance projects and activities, both in the United States and internationally.
The Berkman Klein Center, with key input from senior researcher David O’Brien, an attorney, and fellow Alexandra Wood, plays an important role in this part of the project together with Sweeney, IQSS chief data science and technology officer Mercè Crosas, fellow Michael Bar-Sinai, data scientist Micah Altman of MIT, Chong, and three of Chong’s students: Ph.D. candidate Aaron Bembenek, Obasi Shaw ’17, and Kevin Wang ’18.