Facebook and HKU Announce the Winners of the Ethics in AI Research Initiative for the Asia Pacific
18th June 2020 (Thursday)

Facebook and the Centre for Civil Society and Governance (CCSG) at The University of Hong Kong (HKU) today announced the winners of the Ethics in AI Research Initiative for the Asia Pacific, an initiative to help support thoughtful and groundbreaking academic research in the field of artificial intelligence (AI) ethics. The development of AI technologies often brings to light intricate and complex ethical questions that the industry alone cannot solve. Important research questions in the application of AI should be dealt with not only by companies building and deploying the technology, but also by independent academic research institutions.

To support AI ethics research in the Asia Pacific region, Facebook partnered with CCSG and the Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong (esteemed co-chair of the Permanent Working Group on Ethics and Data Protection in AI of the Global Privacy Assembly) to invite request for proposals (RFP) in December 2019. This RFP aimed to support independent AI ethics research that takes local traditional knowledge and regionally diverse perspectives into account. The RFP was open to academic institutions, think tanks, and research organizations registered and operational across Asia Pacific.

“The latest advancements in AI bring transformational changes to society, but at the same time an array of complex ethical questions that must be closely examined. At Facebook, we believe our understanding of AI should be informed by research conducted in open collaboration with the community. That’s why we’re keen to support independent academic research institutions in APAC to pursue interdisciplinary research in AI ethics that will enable ongoing dialogue on these important issues in the application of AI technology that has a lot of potential to benefit society and mankind,”
Raina Yeung
Head of Privacy and Data Policy, Engagement, APAC at Facebook
“Artificial Intelligence (AI) has created substantial potential for the attainment of the UN Sustainable Development Goals. To fully materialize the potential, AI’s application needs to be ethical, and effectively governed by appropriate rules and mechanisms in multiple arenas. Our Centre is pleased to collaborate with the academia, the AI industry, and the public and business sectors in this initiative to promote research and dialogue on AI ethics in the Asia Pacific region. I look forward to seeing some of the research findings of the winning projects which will inform policy deliberation and action,”
Professor Wai-fung Lam
Director of Centre for Civil Society and Governance, The University of Hong Kong
“AI technologies are increasingly being applied to various industries to enhance business operations, and ethical issues arising from these applications, such as ethical and fair processing of personal data, must be fully addressed. Commercial and public sectors, academia, and regulatory bodies need to work together to promote a strong ethical culture when it comes to the development and application of AI systems. Besides advocating accountability and data ethics for AI, we as the co-chair of the Permanent Working Group on Ethics and Data Protection in AI of the Global Privacy Assembly also take the lead in working out practical guidance in addressing ethical and data protection issues in AI systems. We hope the winning projects will facilitate better understanding of ethics and data protection in AI, and foster regional efforts in this field,”
Stephen Kai-yi Wong
Privacy Commissioner for Personal Data, Hong Kong

Applicants were asked to submit proposals that look into Ethics/fairness by design; Governance; and AI ethics and diversity.  More than 50 proposals were received from 12 countries and cities across the region, and shortlisted candidates were reviewed by a selection committee. The Committee, chaired by Professor Lam, and comprising professionals from diverse backgrounds, have exerted their best effort in selecting excellent proposals. The grants are awarded to 8 winners from 7 countries and cities to support their research. Researchers will have full control of the research timeline and subsequent publication of their completed research papers.

A number of knowledge exchange events have been planned, including the Responsible AI Forum 2020 to be held in Munich, Germany by The Technical University of Munich and another workshop to be organized by CCSG in Hong Kong in 2021. These events aim to bring together members of interested stakeholders and the winners of this Research Initiative to discuss on the responsible use of AI.

AI decisions with dignity: Promoting interactional justice perceptions
Dr. Sarah Bankins, Assistant Professor Paul Formosa, Professor Deborah Richards (Macquarie University, Australia), Dr. Yannick Griep (Radboud University, Netherlands)

The challenges of implementing AI ethics frameworks in the Asia Pacific
Ms. Ramathi Bandaranayake, Viren Dias, Helani Galpaya, Professor Rohan Samarajiva (LIRNEasia, Sri Lanka)

Culturally informed pro-social AI regulation and persuasion framework
Dr. Junaid Qadir (Information Technology University of the Punjab, Pakistan), Dr. Amana Raquib (Institute of Business Administration – Karachi, Pakistan)

Ethical challenges on application of AI for the aged care
Dr. Bo Yan, Dr. Priscilla Song, Professor Chia-Chin Lin (The University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)

Ethical technology assessment on AI and internet of things
Dr. Melvin Jabar, Dr. Ma. Elena Chiong Javier (De La Salle University, Philippines), Mr. Jun Motomura (Meio University, Okinawa, Japan), Dr. Penchan Sherer (Mahidol University, Thailand)

Operationalizing information fiduciaries for AI governance
Mr. Jia Qing Yap, Ms. Jennifer Lim Wei Zhen, Mr. Josh Lee Kok Thong (eTPL.Asia, Singapore), Ong Yuan Zheng, Lenon (eTPL.Asia (LawTech.Asia)), Riyanka Roy Choudhury (eTPL.Asia (Emerging Technologies Policy Forum)), Elizaveta Shesterneva (eTPL.Asia(LawTech.Asia)) (eTPL.Asia, Singapore), Ong Yuan Zheng, Lenon (eTPL.Asia (LawTech.Asia)), Riyanka Roy Choudhury (eTPL.Asia (Emerging Technologies Policy Forum)), Elizaveta Shesterneva (eTPL.Asia(LawTech.Asia))

Respect for rights in the era of automation, using AI and robotics
Ms. Emilie Pradichit (Manushya Foundation, Thailand)

The uses and abuses of black box AI in emergency medicine
Professor Robert Sparrow, Joshua Hatherley, Dr. Mark Howard (Monash University, Australia)

Facebook and CCSG wish to thank all entities who submitted a proposal and congratulate the winners.

Category :   Media

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