February 29, 2024

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Tackling the ethics of data science through conference

The University of Sydney hosted a conference on the ethics of data science, bringing together world-renowned experts to address the current crisis in confidence around machine learning, artificial intelligence (AI) and data use.

As reported, self-driving cars, automated personal assistants and domestic violence, and how they each relate to data and artificial intelligence, were just some of the topics up for debate.

AI affecting daily lives

Undeniably, data and AI are well on their way to affecting every facet of the people’s daily lives.

For instance, industries and government are already relying on machine learning to make important decisions that will have a real effect on the lives of consumers and citizens.

Algorithms are a fundamental tool in everyday machine learning and artificial intelligence, but experts have identified a number of ethical problems.

One problem would be how models built with biased and inaccurate data can have serious implications and dangerous consequences.

These consequences range from the legal and safety implications of self-driving cars and incorrect criminal sentencing, to the use of automated weapons in war.

The conference’s speakers, who came from diverse disciplines such as ethics, law, and AI, discussed the current research and practice relating to the ethics around algorithms.

They identified solutions for creating a new generation of ethical data science techniques.

Using data to end domestic violence

Centre for Translational Science data expert, Dr Roman Marchant, believes that there needs to be a more concerted effort between government and private institutions in using data to better understand criminality and put an end to domestic violence.

The world is at a point in history where a world of data is within our fingertips. However, the complexity of issues such as criminology will always be bigger than any amount of data currently available.

Tackling criminal behaviour and understanding the drivers behind it require building truly multidisciplinary partnerships between data scientists and experts in criminology.

Efforts should be focused on understanding the problem in order to reduce or eliminate crime. Like with any crime, there are specific levers and influences which lead to a person committing domestic violence.

How AI can influence data

Director of the Centre for Translational Data Science, Professor Sally Cripps, believes data experts must understand how to quantify uncertainty to prevent bias.

Notably, algorithms per se are not unethical; the issue lies in the bias in sampling that is created by some implementations of the algorithms.

If an algorithm finds that a subgroup of the population is more likely to experience domestic violence, and on that basis continues to sample from that subgroup, then it is a self-fulfilling prophecy.

To guard against this, a deep understanding of uncertainty and how to quantify it needs to be incorporated into algorithms.

About the Centre

The Centre for Translational Data Science uses data science to preserve natural resources, build intelligent systems, improve digital health and explore the human condition.

Hosting experts from across a diverse range of disciplines, it tackles important research questions, applying innovation and translation, application and foundations to find solutions and ensure real-world impact.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

PARTNER

Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

PARTNER

HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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