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Ram Tumuluri – “UN Agencies should embrace the good and bad of AI Technology”

This week, Ram Tumuluri‘s research team have been looking into how UN Agencies could better embrace the good and the bad of AI Technology.

Artificial intelligence and big data are being used now more than ever. With the goal of simplifying complex tasks and cutting down on time spent on them, both these technologies have benefited both private and business sectors over the last few years. 

AI and Big Data: How UN Agencies Should Embrace the Good and Bad of Technology

So it’s not really surprising that the United Nations is also taking its own approach to AI and big data.

There are three factors, however, that would determine how UN agencies embrace these two technologies. For one, the UN has its broad mission and each UN agency also has its own set of missions specific to its cause. 

These agencies also need to keep up with the rapid growth of new technologies, using those that are most relevant to their needs.  Of course, there are the political narratives that need to be considered when it comes to the use of AI and big data in these agencies.

How do UN agencies respond to AI and big data?

With each agency’s specific goals, there are no one-size-fits-all rules to be followed when it comes to their response to AI and big data. But there are certain recommendations that can be adapted to each of these agencies and the organisation as a whole:

  • UN agencies all share the common goal of helping people live better lives by proper diagnosis and treatment and protection against abuse among other things. 

AI and big data

While AI and big data can help gather relevant information for these causes, agencies also need to consider that these technologies could violate informed consent and privacy, and the possibility of biased decisions due to too much automation in the process.

  • UN agencies should discuss the boundaries that should be in place when using AI and big data. New policies and regulations have to be imposed in line with the organisation’s overall mission and the specific goals of each agency.
  • UN agencies should exercise that extended level of awareness when it comes to the risks that come with AI and big data that could put human rights and civil liberties at risk. 

AI for good

While the goal of “AI for good” is looking to improve healthcare around the world, risks have to be managed properly to avoid problems that could affect the UN’s goals for its key populations. 

At the end of the day, it’s all about picking the good from the bad and knowing how to put the necessary measures to make sure that AI and big data is used properly for the benefit of the UN’s causes.