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OVIC brings together experts to light the way for responsible use of AI

The Office of the Victorian Information Commissioner (OVIC) has published an e-book on Artificial Intelligence (AI) titled Closer to the Machine: Technical, social and legal aspects of AI.

OVIC collaborated with eight experts to produce the e-book including Professor Toby Walsh (University of New South Wales and CSIRO’s Data61), Professor Richard Nock (Australian National University and CSIRO’s Data61), Associate Professor Ben Rubinstein (University of Melbourne), Katie Miller (Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission), and Professor Margaret Jackson (RMIT).

The public sector is increasingly turning to AI technologies to carry out its functions, develop and inform policy and deliver services to its citizens. OVIC developed Closer to the Machine to increase the Victorian public sector’s understanding of AI technologies and to encourage consideration of the potential effects that AI will have on policy, public administration and on society.

“How governments and regulators respond to technological and social developments in AI will have a large and lasting impact on society” said Victorian Information Commissioner, Sven Bluemmel. “We need to encourage worthwhile technological innovation, but we need to do so with our eyes open”.

To celebrate the launch of the e-book, OVIC is hosting an event on Friday 30 August at the Windsor Hotel in Melbourne. The event will feature panel discussions with the expert co-authors and guest speakers, and will be hosted by author, TV host and comedian Adam Spencer. The event will be live streamed on OVIC’s Twitter feed from 1pm AEST: @OVIC_AU.

“AI has the potential both to improve and to hurt people’s privacy”, explained Toby Walsh, panellist and co-author of Closer to the Machine, who is lead researcher at CSIRO’s Data61 and Scientia Professor and University of New South Wales.  “To truly understand the opportunities and risks, you need to understand what AI is, not what Hollywood would have you believe it is”.

The e-book is available to download for free from Thursday 29 August on OVIC’s website. See here for more information:

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