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UNESCO, government, to collaborate on data governance, AI ethics

UNESCO and the government host workshop to establish a foundation for informed policy development that promotes equitable and sustainable AI adoption nationwide.

UNESCO, government, to collaborate on data governance, AI ethics

Thursday June 06, 2024 , 2 min Read

The United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) South Asia Regional Office hosted the National Stakeholder Workshop on Safe, Trusted and Ethical AI in collaboration with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY), Government of India, at the Taj Palace Hotel, New Delhi.

This follows the recent approval of the IndiaAI Mission, a joint venture by MeitY, National e-Governance Division (NEGD), and NASSCOM, which received a budget outlay of Rs 10,372 crore.

The workshop was hosted to support technological self-reliance across India through its key components, including the IndiaAI Compute Capacity, IndiaAI Innovation Centre (IAIC), IndiaAI Datasets Platform, IndiaAI Application Development Initiative, IndiaAI FutureSkills, IndiaAI Startup Financing, and Safe & Trusted AI, according to a PIB press release.

UNESCO seeks to support the Indian government in the integration of ethical considerations into the national and state-level AI strategies and programmes, according to Tim Curtis, UNESCO Representative to India and the Director of UNESCO South Asia Regional Office.

The event saw participation from senior-level officials from various central line ministries, state governments, NITI Aayog and industry partners such as NASSCOM.

The event also doubled as a platform for having crucial discussions surrounding the integration of safe, trusted and ethical AI considerations into the national and state-level AI strategies and programmes, ensuring that the deployment of AI technologies aligns with public welfare and adheres to international norms and standards, the statement added.

“As AI raises concerns on ethics and its societal implications, India aims to adopt a balanced approach on AI. India has launched several initiatives including, the India AI mission to foster the development and adoption of AI,” said Prof Ajay Kumar Sood, Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India.

AI is expected to add nearly $500 billion to India’s GDP by 2025, driven by advancements in various sectors such as healthcare, financial services, and telecommunications, the release added.

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“When it comes to the use of the word ethics, we prefer to define it in terms of building a safe and trusted AI which will not result in user harm; which will result in ensuring a framework that will promote innovation and that will restrict the risks that are related to AI,” said Abhishek Singh, Additional Secretary, MeitY, who inaugurated the session along with Ajay Kumar Sood, Tim Curtis, and Gabriela Ramos, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Social and Human Sciences.


Edited by Jyoti Narayan