Webinar on artificial intelligence for young Europeans

  • Youth
  • 03/07/2017
  • BIK Team

On Thursday, 29 June 2017, youth panellists from the Insafe network of Safer Internet Centres (SICs) had the opportunity to join a youth webinar on artificial intelligence. The webinar, titled "Are YOUth ready for the future? Insights on artificial intelligence and its impact on life", aimed to provide young people with information on the implications of artificial intelligence (AI) on privacy, protection of data and ways of living.

Young people joining the webinar could learn more about artificial intelligence and what it really looks like in our daily lives. AI draws upon the huge amounts of data that we are sharing everyday via social media. With the help of algorithms, data is then analysed and used to offer us personalised services, advertisements, news, and so on, often limiting the options available or sometimes revealing private information. Technology can go even further with, for example, face recognition being used to scan a customer's face and make food order suggestions based on mood, age and gender. An important question arises in such instances regarding what the company will do with the data collected and how that data will be stored.

With AI becoming omnipresent in our life, new skills and competences are required to be able to carry out our jobs. "Take for example the delivery service: what happens when your boss is an algorithm? Jobs are going to change as well as the skills that people require to do the job", said Chris Pinchen, founder of The Privacy Agency and guest speaker at the webinar. Inherently, ethics in AI will play a leading role in ensuring that the technology is safe and does not have a negative impact on human life. The example of self-driving cars comes to mind when talking about ethics: who is to blame in case of an accident and who will get harmed: the passengers of the car or those outside it?

Partin Imeri, an I-LINC youth ambassador and software engineer from Kosovo, shared his own experience with technology and data with the webinar's participants. Working in the ICT field for more than five years and concentrating on web technologies, Partin has been involved in several projects where he had the chance to be a trainer and mentor for different new technologies. "If it's online, it's not safe, so be careful what data you share online", said Partin.

Before and after the webinar, young people were invited to take a poll, the purpose of which was twofold: to test their knowledge on AI and to provide feedback on the webinar. For young people, AI is defined as "self-thinking and evolving software", "machines solving real problems"', or "the capability of a machine to imitate intelligent human behaviour". When asked about profiling, most of the youth participants responded that they like to receive personalised information based on their preferences; nevertheless, some were concerned for their privacy and the way their data is being used. Ethics, responsibility and regulation seemed to be among the trending challenges in the future, which shows that young people are conscious of the challenges that lie ahead for the social inclusion of AI.

For updates on future events and webinars for young people, keep checking the Better Internet for Kids (BIK) portal at www.betterinternetforkids.eu, subscribe to the quarterly BIK bulletin, or follow news on Twitter: @Paneuyouth.

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