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UAE to Convene Key Stakeholders to Draw-up Plans for Global Data-sharing Platform

Omar Al Olama: UAE implementing an ambitious AI strategy that serves people

UAE spearheading design of a Global Data Commons (GDC), reinforcing position as leader in global AI governance

The UAE will bring some of the world’s leading data institutions together to draw-up plans for the world’s first data-sharing platform for global AI standards at the “Global Data Commons” meeting on February 8. The meeting will take place on the sidelines of the Global AI Governance Forum, at the seventh World Government Summit (WGS 2019) between 8 – 10 February 2019.

The move will reinforce the nation’s position as a global leader in the critical AI ethics dialogue, investment and research, and pave the way for it to become a neutral hub and global facilitator for the international development of AI as the Fourth Industrial Revolution continues to shape the future.

This Global Data Commons (GDC) will provide a decentralized cyber-infrastructure for data collection, classification, preservation and analysis, and will fit into the overarching theme of “AI for Good”, which forms the central emphasis of the Forum this year and aims to meet with the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The initiative will aim to fill the current gap in the rapidly evolving, and ever-growing AI framework. According to industry experts there is a chasm the potential for AI to be used in meeting SDGs and the actual capacity of countries and citizens to access and use data. And for this gap to be bridged, a global data commons is of paramount importance.

His Excellency Omar bin Sultan Al Olama, Minister of State for Artificial Intelligence, said: “The importance of AI and its potential to transform the global economy, the functioning of all institutions of society, and the professional and personal lives of citizens cannot be overestimated. However, while we are used to seeing daily technological advances in AI, ethical advances lag far behind. This needs to be addressed, especially with some applications already attracting negative attention, such as those that risk intrusions on privacy.”

 “Governments across the world are in a prime position to lead the way when it comes to the future ethical development of AI to ensure its progress is harnessed for the benefit of us all. Leading the development of an AI data-sharing platform is a significant step both for the nation and for the industry that will undoubtedly change the way we live in the future.”

Ethics in AI will form a core theme of this year’s Global AI Governance Forum as the world’s most influential AI experts convene to examine how AI is set to transform the lives of the global citizens. UNESCO will be among the heavyweight organizations present at the event to address the topic. Specifically, UNESCO representatives will highlight their work with ethically aligned AI in the biotech field.

Sessions running in the days leading up to WGS include one on ethically aligned design, held in conjunction with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Standards Association, which is collaborating with the UAE in this domain. And a workshop with members of the Council on Extended Intelligence (CXI) will focus on getting people ready to embrace and utilize AI ethically and efficiently in the future.

Furthermore, the Global Governance of AI Roundtable – another vital component of the overarching AI Governance Forum – will return for a second year on February 10. It will discuss blockchain-based incentive mechanisms, the latest developments in human AI, building public trust in AI and a host of other subjects, as leading industry experts give their insights on the dynamism of AI in the future.

Al Olama added: “The ethical imperatives and grey areas within the rapidly evolving sphere of AI are issues that governments across the world will need to address as AI plays an ever more important role in our lives.”

This year’s Global Governance of AI Roundtable will be structured around four specific working groups: “Mapping the rise of AI and its governance”, “Governing AI in differing global contexts”, “An international panel on AI for the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals”, and “Making the AI revolution work for everyone”. Each working group will have several smaller sub-committees to facilitate deeper discussion around a series of sub-topics. A total of 64 sub-committees will convene, debate and analyze the future of AI governance.

AI forms a key part of the UAE’s vision for economic growth, innovation, development and human well-being, with the UAE Artificial Intelligence Strategy launched in 2017.

The World Government Summit 2019 will run from February 10 to 12 at Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai. The landmark event is set to convene more than 4,000 participants from 140 countries, including heads of state and governments, as well as top-tier representatives of 30 international organizations.

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