AI is making inroads into daily life and it raises concerns, Source: Depositphotos

Nine European cities propose AI transparency standard for all

Nine European cities propose AI transparency standard for all

The aim is to define the ethics of this sphere while it is still in its infancy stage

Nine European cities, cooperating through the Eurocities Digital Forum Lab, have developed common guidelines for the information to be collected by artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms by municipal administrations. Likewise, the open source ‘data schema’ proposal concerns the use of AI in ethical ways with the aim of forging trust between the public sector and citizens.

The cities in question are Barcelona, Bologna, Brussels Capital Region, Eindhoven, Mannheim, Rotterdam and Sofia, which developed the AI algorithm registers standard based on the successful examples of Helsinki and Amsterdam.

AI making inroads into public administration

In the process of digital transformation, many European cities have been adopting simple algorithms, however, AI is also increasingly appearing in the sphere of public management in order to optimize the offering of public services and the gathering of on-point data.

The latter process, however, has also been the cause of unease among some of the public regarding various concerns, such as intrusion into privacy and the limits of control as they could veer into human rights and freedoms territory.

Artificial Intelligence can be an important enabler to improve public services and support policy making. However, its use also brings ethical concerns,” said André Sobczak, Secretary General, Eurocities.

He added: “The efforts undertaken by these cities aim to set a standard for the transparent and ethical use of algorithms while their use is still in its relative infancy across city administrations in Europe. In this way, they seek to offer both a safeguard for people whose data may be used by algorithms, and have created a validated model that other cities can use straight away, without having to invest further resources themselves.”

To develop the data schema, Eurocities, through its Digital Forum lab, built on the existing example of Amsterdam and Helsinki. Eurocities further enlisted the work of an expert in data, who has worked alongside experts from the cities to test and validate the content and functionality of the schema, to ensure ethical, transparent and fair use of algorithms.



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