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Digital Ethics Summit 2022 – Staying the course

In less than two weeks techUK are hosting our sixth Digital Ethics Summit, an annual opportunity to reflect on the major ethical questions facing the tech industry. Sue Daley, Director of Tech & Innovation, shares what we should expect this year.

Since we first had the idea for the Summit in 2017, the role of digital ethics has evolved significantly. Back then, we got together to form principles for responsible technology, AI in particular, and important civil society bodies such as the Ada Lovelace Institute were just being established. Now, those organisations have become well established and we are gathering to see how the implementation of ethical principles is progressing across industry, policy and regulation.  

The journey from principles to practice is not always an easy one, which is why this year’s theme is Staying the course. Ethical questions rarely have straightforward answers and myriad priorities and stakeholders inform which approaches are pursued. Keeping digital ethics as a core guide to decision-making even when it gets difficult is a measure of commitment, and the purpose of this year’s Summit is to find out how to make sure we stay committed. We will look at action already undertaken across public and private sectors, ask what we have learned from mistakes made in the past, and scan the horizon with themes such as safety in the metaverse and AI ‘sentience’.  

To help us navigate these conversations, we are joined by some of the greatest thinkers on digital ethics. Some of them have shared their insights since the early Summits, including Professor Luciano Floridi of Oxford University, Hetan Shah from the British Academy and Carly Kind who heads up the Ada Lovelace Institute. Others are new faces at the Summit, including John Edwards, who came into office as Information Commissioner at the beginning of this year, and Professor Beth Singler who brings a fascinating perspective as a Professor of Digital Religion(s). Crucially, we bring to the fore the voice of the tech industry itself, from those who provide advice and guidance on ethical practices, including Clifford Chance and Sopra Steria, to those who build the technologies that impact our everyday lives, like Roblox, X0PA AI and QuantumBlack, AI by McKinsey.  

Altogether, I think it will be a fantastic group of people for some of the most important discussions in current times, and I truly hope to see many of you there. You can sign up for your ticket here

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