The Summer Institute on AI and Society

International Summer Institute exploring societal impacts, risks, governance, and ethics of AI and Machine Learning

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

July 21 – 24, 2019

About the Summer Institute

The inaugural Summer Institute on AI and Society, co-convened by CIFAR, the AI PULSE program at UCLA School of Law, and the Alberta Machine Intelligence Institute (Amii), takes place July 21-24, 2019 in Edmonton, Canada. Summer Institute takes place prior to Deep Learning and Reinforcement Learning Summer School, and includes a combined event on July 24th for both Summer Institute and Summer School participants.

Rapid advances in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning have raised concerns about the societal impacts and potential risks of these technologies, the legal and governance challenges they may pose, and the ethical responsibilities of researchers and organizations working on these high-stakes and potentially transformative technologies.

To help advance understanding and debate on these issues, Summer Institute brings together experts, grad students and researchers from multiple backgrounds. Participants will explore the societal, governmental, and ethical implications of AI through a combination of lectures, panels, and participatory problem-solving. Participants will also have a chance to shape the curriculum throughout this uniquely interactive event.

Goals and Organization of the Summer Institute:

Potential impacts of AI range from specific, near-term issues such as concerns related to transparency and accountability, algorithmic bias and equity, and liability for autonomous vehicles and other automated physical systems, to longer-term disruptions to employment, economic structure, government functioning and geopolitics.

The Summer Institute will bring a distinguished international group of leading researchers together with advanced students and early-career researchers to facilitate intensive, collaborative explorations of the societal, political, governance, and ethical implications of rapid technical advances in artificial intelligence and machine learning, and their applications to diverse areas of private and public decision-making.

Following a set of focused briefings and mini-lectures to introduce key concepts and controversies, the Summer Institute will be organized around collectively generated discussion sessions and working groups that are intended to seed collaborations that will advance research, assessment, policy development, and advanced professional instruction which in turn will help society draw maximum benefit from these technologies while managing associated risks and disruptions.

Who Should Apply?

We invite applications from graduate students and early-career researchers working in any disciplinary area who demonstrate interest in the societal impacts, governance, and ethics of AI/ML. Participants must be prepared to be active participants in an intensely collaborative environment. The Summer Institute aims to both advance the debate on AI and Society, and bring new voices and perspectives into the debate, particularly from underrepresented groups.

Consequently, while prior engagement with AI and Society issues is preferable, it is not required; furthermore, we recognize that such engagement can take many forms. In view of the intensely collaborative nature of the Summer Institute, strong English-language communication skills are essential.

Cost and Logistics

Participation in the Summer Institute is free of charge, including accommodation and meals. Participants are responsible for their own costs of travel, but some scholarship funds are available for participants who would not otherwise be able to attend.

How to Apply

Applications are now closed.

Media Kit

Media contact:
Spencer Murray, Director of Communications & Public Relations, Amii
t: 587.415.6100 | e:

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