Implications of AI development

futuristic ai robot

EDIN - AIDAN workshop and potential collaborations.

Rapid advances in the domain of artificial intelligence have altered our daily reality and impact a variety of social and cultural domains. This is reflected in hopes for the potential use of AI in problem-solving as well as fears about implications of technological transformations. Collective fantasies about a looming large-scale conflict between humans and machines (or other creatures of our making) are revived in media representations as well as public discourses. The social imaginaries, moral panics and real life implications of AI development are subject to increasing academic scrutiny.

Equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) are at the core of this growing field of research. The AI and Data Analysis Network (AIDAN), the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Network (EDIN) and the Institute for Ethical AI organised a half-day workshop at Oxford Brookes Headington campus on 31 January 2024. Oxford Brookes colleagues from a wide range of disciplines explored implications of AI development on EDI. The event also invited researchers interested to work in the area and who could potentially bring their expertise to support future work on this nexus.

Speakers included Selin Nugent, Assistant Director of the Centre for AI, Culture and Society, who spoke about her research on designing inclusive AI and the role of social impact assessment and participatory engagement approaches and deployment. Keven Maynard, Co-Director at the Institute for Ethical AI, provided insights on risks and ethics of market surveillance of online sales. Fabio Iapaolo, Research Fellow in AI, Data & Society, gave a presentation on ‘Seven Brief Lessons on AI: Understanding the Data Behind It’, and Guy Huber, Senior Lecturer in the Business School, discussed AI and subjectivity. Lindsay Steenberg, Chair of EDIN, presented a paper on ‘The Posthuman Femme Fatale’ highlighting the gender dynamics in anthropomorphised representation of AI on screen.

In the second part of the workshop, participants explored shared research interests and possible themes for collaborations, such as AI’s role in shaping the future of EDI in HR, appropriation and commodification culture and heritage with AI, EDI implications of new methods and approaches from research to policing, representations of AI and ideas of being human, and pragmatic concerns with current AI practices.

The event has initiated an ongoing exchange between Oxford Brookes researchers currently involved in research that can help to develop a better understanding of EDI related issues in this rapidly growing field. A series of further events, either already in preparation or in planning stages will follow.  EDIN and AIDAN, as well as the new research Centre for AI in Culture and Society (CAICS) can provide support for collaborative initiatives and funding applications. Please get in touch if you like to be involved