The future of EU’s Artificial Strategy: CSOs voice on digitalisation

On 12 June 2020, SOLIDAR Foundation has provided its views on the European Commission public consultation on the White Paper on Artificial Intelligence (AI) – A European Approach. The White Paper represents the initial strategy of the new European Commission on the future of AI in Europe. It presents a vision solely informed by an innovative and competitive EU, disregarding the impact of the AI on people’s lives and without providing a clear vision of what exactly is AI and how it will be regulated. The public consultation serves as a first step to inform future decisions of the EU to develop a European Regulatory Framework for high-risk AI.

SOLIDAR Foundation takes this opportunity to publish its Position Paper on AI, espousing the view of CSOs across Europe that engage in education and training, formally, informally and non-formally. Considering the wide-scale implications of AI solutions in private and public sector, SOLIDAR Foundation found it relevant that CSOs’ voices are heard and considered, especially for those directly involved in education at a time when AI would also be introduced in this field.

To better understand SOLIDAR Foundation and its members’ understanding of what AI is, the Position Paper provides a clarification on the importance of conceptualizing AI from the perspective of human rights, given how those will be impacted by this new wave of digitalization. Moreover, the Position Paper considers the implications of AI on an EU that currently has almost half of its citizens missing basic digital skills, that experiences wide discrepancies in academic achievement and in access to digital infrastructure. In addition, the paper assesses the implications of AI solutions on the shrinking civic space, surveillance capitalism and reinforcement of pre-existent societal bias.

SOLIDAR Foundation commits to continue advocating for responsible AI solutions that mitigate risks for human rights and that would promote social cohesion rather than private interest. Read more about our position here.

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