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Health Data Partnerships: using trust to build trust

This morning’s discussion – jointly hosted by the All-Party Parliamentary Groups on Data Analytics and Health – suggested that if we want uses of health data to be trusted, we need to trust citizens and patients to think more deeply about benefits and risks than media headlines might suggest. The session was inspired by a […]

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Where should I put my data?

After a couple of years when the question of data location had dropped a little down the priority list, two things have pushed it back up again. First, the Schrems II decision of the European Court, which cancelled the US-EU Privacy Shield and added some – but it’s not yet clear how onerous – new […]

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AI: thinking about definitions…

To ensure a lively discussion at a recent round-table on AI Ethics participants were asked, provocatively, “was the A Level algorithm fair?”. OK, I can be provoked… It depends on what you mean by “fair”… As has been widely discussed, the main objective set for those who designed the algorithm  seems to have been to […]

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AI: Regulation isn’t enough

Alan Shark’s SOCITM ShareNational keynote looked at why regulation is not sufficient to deal with emerging technologies, and the complementary role that needs to be played by ethics. Although privacy is not the only threat posed by such technologies, it does seem to be the one that has got people interested in the debate, whether over […]

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AI: It’s not (just) what you use…

Allison Gardner’s keynote to the SOCTIM ShareNational conference last week highlighted how using AI responsibly is at least as much about how decisions are made as about the technology itself. Questions of “transparency” often focus on whether the AI is explainable, but how decisions were made – even how a particular problem was identified and […]

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“Digital Ethics”, or Ethical Digitalisation?

Perhaps surprisingly – given that its title was “Digital ethics” – last week’s SOCITM panel session spent a lot of  time exploring things that aren’t “digital”. Although the discussion focussed on local government, a lot of the ideas seemed relevant to education, too. Don’t be solutionist: technology might not be the right option. When identifying […]

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Framing the Algorithm

A panel on Algorithms at the UK IGF asked whether the summer of 2020 was a catastrophe – “mutant algorithm” having entered political discourse – or an opportunity to work with a population that is now much more aware of the personal significance of the debate? “Transparency” is often cited as a remedy, but we […]

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Building Trust in a Digital Identity

A panel on “Building Trust in a Digital Identity” at the UK IGF may have raised more questions than answers, but at least highlighted why doing so is taking so long. Since terminology can be confusing, what was being discussed was how to prove facts about your real-world self to an online service: for example […]

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Thinking creatively about COVID-19

Lilian Edwards gave a fascinating keynote at the UK IGF this morning, on Protecting Digital Rights During a Pandemic. Though privacy is the most often discussed right in the context of pandemic response, rights of free speech and free assembly also need to be borne in mind. Although the impact of national schemes (contact tracing […]

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BEREC Net Neutrality Guidelines: good news for security

BEREC, the board of European Telecoms Regulators, has just published its updated guidance on enforcing the Network Neutrality Regulation. Jisc has been working with the Forum of Incident Response and Security Teams (FIRST) for nearly five years to ensure that this legislation and guidance didn’t discourage legitimate practices to secure the operation of networks: this […]