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The Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund Commits $7.6 Million to Support the Development of AI in the Public Interest

With the Berkman Klein Center and  MIT Media Lab as academic anchor institutions, the Ethics and Governance of Artificial Intelligence Fund today announced funding for nine organizations to amplify the voice of civil society in shaping the evolution of AI, bolstering efforts to promote the development of ethical, accountable systems that advance the public interest. Launched in January 2017 with $27 million contributed by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, Omidyar Network, LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and Jim Pallotta, the Fund has committed an initial $7.6 million in grants for new and ongoing initiatives.

The Berkman Klein Center and the MIT Media Lab received $5.9 million, which will enable work in three initial core areas: media and information quality; social and criminal justice; and autonomous vehicles. Additional projects and activities will address common challenges across these core areas such as the global governance of AI and the ways in which the use of AI may reinforce existing biases, particularly against underserved and underrepresented populations.

“We are deeply grateful for the generous support by the Ethics and Governance of AI Fund, which takes our productive collaboration with the MIT Media Lab to the next level and enables us to build new bridges between the worlds of engineering and computer science, public policy and law, and social science as applied to autonomous systems ” said Urs Gasser, executive director of the Berkman Klein Center and Professor of Practice at Harvard Law School. “I’m also very excited about the Fund’s commitment towards supporting a broader global conversation around AI, bringing perspectives and voices from other parts of the world to our open and collaborative effort.”

For more information on this initial round of funding, read the full Fund press release.  We invite you to learn more about the Berkman Klein Center’s AI ethics and governance activities on our updated project page.

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