International Conference on Sustainable AI

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More than 90 experts from over 21 countries to speak at the University of Bonn in late May

What impact does artificial intelligence (AI) have on the environment? And what might the ramifications of AI be for society? These are some of the questions being tackled by the research group led by Aimee van Wynsberghe, a Humboldt Professor at the University of Bonn. She will now bring international experts in the field together between May 30 and June 1. At the Universitätsclub Bonn, the researchers will discuss cross-cultural perspectives of sustainable AI on a global level.

This is the second international conference to be organized by Aimee van Wynsberghe’s Bonn Sustainable AI Lab at the University of Bonn’s Institute of Science and Ethics. Entitled "Sustainable AI Across Borders", this year’s event will focus particularly on intercultural and post-colonial perspectives, with more than 90 speakers lined up from over 21 countries.

On a global level, many ethical questions arise about the sustainability of AI. For example, although some countries play a key role in the early production phase and in waste disposal, they might never reap any of the benefits of AI. At the conference, the researchers will discuss issues including environmental and social justice along the entire AI development and supply chain, AI and (post-)colonialism, the links between gender and AI, and how AI ties in with global healthcare.

"With the current rise in AI enthusiasm for tools like ChatGPT, we must confront the ethical issues associated with the impact of AI on people and planet," Aimee van Wynsberghe explains. She says that we must ask ourselves whether the promised benefits of AI can outweigh the risks. "It is wonderful to see such interest from around the world in this topic that we are so passionate about here at the Bonn Sustainable AI Lab."

The keynote speeches will be given by Shannon Vallor from the University of Edinburgh (UK), Caesar Atuire from the University of Ghana (Ghana), Benedetta Brevini from the University of Sydney (Australia) and Ulises Mejias from SUNY Oswego (US).

There will also be a number of specific debates organized by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, UNESCO and the German Society for Gender Research.

Following on from the world’s first research conference on these issues two years ago, this year’s conference will be held in a hybrid form-both in person in Bonn and online.

More information on the conference and the provisional program can be found at https://sustainable-ai-conf­