IGF 2018 WS #453 The future of work: connecting AI, workers and education

Organizer 1: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 2: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 3: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 4: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 5: Private Sector, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)

In the past years, the dynamism of the information society has transformed the ways in which we interact, communicate and work. Along with the increase of Internet access indicators and adoption of smart and connected systems diffusion, artificial Intelligence (A.I.) is becoming a buzzword in the tech industry in most conversations relating to new products, new services and new jobs. Whether at home, at school or at work, it is almost inevitable to not use or interact with any kind of machine learning or automated process. Advances in technology and these news technologies has (i) intensified connections between people and information and (ii) led computers to perform tasks that they did not perform before. Many of us may have already interacted with a chatbot on platforms, or has been introduced to new and innovative ways of working in terms of automation of tasks, human assistance, used cloud processing and deep learning tools. These transformations have been creating new fields, bringing together different fields of knowledge and different types of professionals, increasing the need of dialogue involving professionals in computing, mathematics, statistics, sociology, law, etc.
However, along with all this excitement around the development of powerful artificial intelligence tools, we must consider fears and misunderstandings about what exactly AI is, and what it is really happening. Based on the assumption that the “future is near”, this workshop proposal finds its relevance and opportunity to take place bringing different perspectives and empirical experiences to the table, with a particular focus on developing countries.
Several studies from different institutions underscores this view. According to a study from Redwood Software and Sapio Research (2017), “83% of IT leaders say robotic automation is essential or a key part of their digital transformation strategy”, impacting 60% of businesses by 2022 and threatening jobs in the process. In the same direction, a PwC report (2017) suggests people only have five years before automation and will workers will be forced to learn new skills. Other widely cited study, from the University of Oxford, predicts that 47% of US jobs are at high risk of automation soon, “with the lowest skill jobs most likely to be eliminated” (2013). At the same time, a Gartner Report (2017) claims that A.I. will create more jobs than it displaces.
Considering the complexity of the relationship between technology and society in terms of labor relations, among the key concerns around this technological reality, we must consider: (i) the effective impact of technology on labor system; (i) challenges of proactive and reactive AI regulation; (iii) how workers, business leaders and the students are preparing themselves for this future.

Format: 

Round Table - 90 Min

Interventions: 

The format chosen to this session intends to enable interventions from the experts invited to the table, representing multistakeholder community from distinct countries, sectors and visions towards, as well as inputs from in-person and online general audience .
There will be one moderator in charge to make a quick introduction of the workshop presenting key concepts and daily uses of the A.I. technology, how it works in specific cases, its particularities and general question about how machine automation and artificial intelligence can change the future of work (10 minutes). After this first round, the members of the roundtable will handle short presentations of particular real cases which reflects challenges and opportunities of A.I on their work life, discussing specific aspects such as legal and regulatory issues, responsible research and innovation ideas, products and services, Internet and society challenges, justice, transparency and sustainable innovation that transpass the use of new technologies in terms of future of work. They are able, indeed, to react and complement the moderator’s observations with comments focused on the particularities of their experiences (20 minutes each). Finally, discussion with the audience will be held at the end of the session. Moderator will facilitate a Q&A dynamic (30 minutes). At this moment, our objective is to create the opportunity to onsite and online audience interact with the panelists, addressing other concerns and to inquire the content presented during the first part of the workshop. After each block of two or three questions gathered by the moderator, the panelists will have the opportunity to comment on the issues raised.
Beyond the opening of the section, the moderator will be in charge to control the time during all stages of the workshop. At the end, he will be in charge to provide general comments on the overall issues addressed in the during the session, considering opportunities and challenges grounded on the cases presented by the specialists and by the audience.
The workshop participants are:
Moderators:
Onsite Moderator: Ana Paula Camelo - Female, FGV São Paulo School of Law (FGV Direito SP)
Online Moderator: Vitor Henrique Pinto Ido - Male, Development, Innovation, and Intellectual Property Programme - South Centre
Rapporteur: Victor Varcelly Medeiros Farias - Male, UOL/Faculdade Casper Libero
Speakers:
José Antonio Batista De Moura Ziebarth - Male, University of Melbourne Law School (Melbourne, Australia)
Serena Natile - Female, Brunel University/King's College London
Stefania Milan - Femanel, DATACTIVE, University of Amsterdam
Vidushi Marda - Female, Policy Advisor with ARTICLE 19’s Team Digital

Diversity: 

To accomplish the workshop objectives and address the complexity imaginaries and realities related to the workforce and workspace in the future associated to A.I. technologies, it was made the effort to gather a broad diversity of participants considering gender, country of origin, stakeholder group and different backgrounds. This diversity was considered for the selection of speakers and for the organizers. Considering that the panel’s composition is quite diverse in terms of sectors, experiences and backgrounds, we aim to raise fundamental issues at the session regarding the opportunities and the challenges for the future of jobs in the world of A.I. and robotics.

The workshop aims at discussing imaginaries and experiences already in course regarding the adoption of new technologies in daily routines of different professionals and in different places, with a focus on the impacts of Artificial Intelligence. Furthermore, it aims to explore educational, ethical, and economic challenges along with possible technological and policy conflicts associated to this process, considered for many as a technological revolution sited at the 4th industrial revolution. This mapping exercise will provide an opportunity for sharing different experiences and empirical evidence beyond theoretical arguments on AI. As put by Stephen Hawkins, "AI is likely to be either the best or worst thing to happen to humanity", so we must consider a plethora of questions and uncertainties concerning the limits and the risks of this socio-technical dynamic, including the political economy of workforce transformation currently taking place.
Regarding this context, the workshop agenda includes a debate on the following issues: a) adoption of A.I. technologies as a business strategy and an outcome of technological innovation processes observed worldwide; b) challenges and risks of incorporating these tools by different professions; c) intersection with Internet Governance Principles, such as human rights, environment for innovation and creativity; d) education strategies and initiatives that simultaneously impact different dimensions of teaching: methodology, professors, students and institution. Its goals are directed to grow unique experiences, to train the professors and students of the future and create a cutting-edge culture for innovation.
Panelists from multidisciplinary background and from different countries will be invited to discuss the concrete emergence of this new technological reality in a roundtable. The workshop will begin with a brief presentation on the projections and key arguments related to this reality, exploring some empirical cases in a large spectrum of possibilities in different industries from healthcare, transportation, finance, legal and education sectors to set the scene. This intervention will be followed by several short presentations. A discussion with the audience will be invited to join the discussion at the end of the session.

Discussion Facilitation: 

The discussion in the proposed session will be facilitated around three policy questions posed for the participants in the round-table as well as the audience in general: (1) How machine automation and artificial intelligence (AI) will change the future of work? (2) Does artificial intelligence pose a threat? And (3) Will technology create enough jobs to replace those it destroys? Which types? The discussion will be facilitated by the onsite moderators who will guide the debate and control time in each of the proposed sections of the workshop as well as during the Q&A and comments session.

Online Participation: 

The use of WebEx platform will enable online participation and interaction during the Q&A moment of the workshop. Onsite and remote participation will be treated indiscriminately. Social media (Twitter and Facebook) will also be employed during the workshop by the online moderator who will be in charge of browsing social media using some hashtags (to be defined).

Contact Information

United Nations
Secretariat of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

Villa Le Bocage
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland

igf [at] un [dot] org
+41 (0) 229 173 678