Professor Philip Howard - 'AI and the Global Information Environment'
Artificial intelligence offers both promises and risks, as each new specialty or consumer application comes online. Governments worldwide are taking action to regulate AI, mostly through voluntary codes of conduct. The risks of algorithmic bias, manipulation, and misinformation can go beyond borders, however, and we have a limited ability to generate and evaluate evidence about those risks. How can we make technology policy that advances positive outcomes for public life?

In this talk, Professor Howard will discuss the global trends in AI diffusion and public attitudes towards AI. He will introduce the International Panel on the Information Environment (IPIE). This new, independent research organization is committed to providing actionable scientific knowledge about threats to the world’s information environment. Launched at the recent Nobel Summit on “Truth Trust and Hope,” the IPIE’s overarching objective is to provide policymakers, industry, and civil society with regular scientific assessments by organizing, evaluating, and promoting research, with the broad aim of improving the global information environment. With growing suspicion about how technology companies behave, and growing pressure for transparency about data practices, the IPIE can help raise public confidence in the development and application of new AI systems.

Phil Howard is a Professorial Fellow at Balliol College, University of Oxford and Chair of the International Panel on the Information Environment. He is a global authority on technology innovation and public policy. He writes about information politics and international affairs, and is the author of ten books, including The Managed Citizen, Pax Technica, and Computational Propaganda. He has won multiple scientific prizes, and his commentary writing has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post, and many international media outlets. He was named a “Global Thinker” by Foreign Policy magazine, and the National Democratic Institute awarded him their “Democracy Prize”, for pioneering the social science of fake news and misinformation. He has testified before the US Senate, UK Houses of Parliament, and European Commission on the impact of misinformation on human rights, media freedoms, and democratic values.
Date: 16 January 2024, 17:00 (Tuesday, 1st week, Hilary 2024)
Venue: Venue to be announced
Speaker: Professor Philip Howard (University of Oxford)
Organising department: Balliol College
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Booking required?: Required
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Cost: Free
Audience: Public
Editor: David Barker