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Artificial Intelligence

How ICT Can Restore Lagging European Productivity Growth

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Notwithstanding the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, and the Internet of Things (IOT), European productivity growth has slowed, and continues to lag U.S. growth.1 Since the financial crisis, labor productivity in the 28 EU member states has grown just 0.7 percent annually. At this rate, it will take a century for Europe’s per capita incomes to double. No wonder there is political unrest across the continent. And while Europe decreased the productivity gap with the United States before 1995, since then, the gap has only widened. Reversing that trend is critical if Europe is going to be able to effectively cope with its demographic challenges, particularly a rapidly aging population, and be able to more effectively compete in global markets. To do that it needs more ubiquitous use—as distinct from production—of information and communication technologies (ICTs) by all organizations (for-profit, nonprofit, and government) throughout all of Europe.
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63
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The Impact of the EU’s New Data Protection Regulation on AI

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, March 27, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The EU’s new data privacy rules, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), will have a negative impact on the development and use of artificial intelligence (AI) in Europe, putting EU firms at a competitive disadvantage compared with their competitors in North America and Asia. The GDPR’s AI-limiting provisions do little to protect consumers, and may, in some cases, even harm them. The EU should reform the GDPR so that these rules do not tie down its digital economy in the coming years.
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37
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The Task Ahead of Us - Transforming the Global Economy With Connectivity, Automation, and Intelligence

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, January 7, 2019
Abstract in English: 
Economies are complex production systems with myriad subcomponent production systems—that is, industries—from manufacturing to health care to retail. What and how these production systems produce is grounded in technology. So, as technologies change, production systems change—around the world. Today, the most important and widely shared technologies are digital information technologies that have evolved from the mainframe and mini-computing systems of the 1960s and 70s. They include an array of personal computing devices, back-office servers, IT-embedded machines, and cloud-based services that are connected or dynamically provisioned to users over private networks or the Internet. But the world is now beginning to transform into a new kind of digital system, one that will not only build on existing devices and systems, but also increasingly will incorporate emerging technologies such as sensors, robotics, and artificial intelligence as they improve in price and performance. This next digital economy will be significantly more connected (with many more things, and many more types of things networked, including in more advanced wireless, satellite, and wireline networks), more automated (as devices and systems enable more work to be done by machines), and smarter (as algorithms play increasingly important roles in sensing—and making sense of—all this).
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24
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The Promise of Artificial Intelligence

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 10, 2016
Abstract in English: 
Artificial intelligence (AI) is on a winning streak. In 2005, five teams successfully completed the DARPA Grand Challenge, a competition held by the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to spur development of autonomous vehicles.1 In 2011, IBM’s Watson system beat out two longtime human champions to win Jeopardy! In 2016, Google DeepMind’s AlphaGo system defeated the 18-time world-champion Go player. And thanks to Apple’s Siri, Microsoft’s Cortana, Google’s Google Assistant, and Amazon’s Alexa, consumers now have easy access to a variety of AI-powered virtual assistants to help manage their daily lives. The potential uses of AI to identify patterns, learn from experience, and find novel solutions to new challenges continue to grow as the technology advances. Moreover, AI is already having a major positive impact in many different sectors of the global economy and society. For example, humanitarian organizations are using intelligent chatbots to provide psychological support to Syrian refugees, and doctors are using AI to develop personalized treatments for cancer patients. Unfortunately, the benefits of AI, as well as its likely impact in the years ahead, are vastly underappreciated by policymakers and the public. Moreover, a contrary narrative—that AI raises grave concerns and warrants a precautionary regulatory approach to limit the damages it could cause—has gained prominence, even though it is both wrong and harmful to societal progress. To showcase the overwhelmingly positive impact of AI, this report provides a description of the major uses of AI as well as details on 70 real-world examples of how AI is already generating social and economic benefits. Policymakers should consider these benefits as they evaluate the steps they can take to support the development and adoption of AI.
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48
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The promise and challenge of the age of artificial intelligence

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, October 15, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The time may have finally come for artificial intelligence (AI) after periods of hype followed by several “AI winters” over the past 60 years. AI now powers so many real-world applications, ranging from facial recognition to language translators and assistants like Siri and Alexa, that we barely notice it. Along with these consumer applications, companies across sectors are increasingly harnessing AI’s power in their operations. Embracing AI promises considerable benefits for businesses and economies through its contributions to productivity growth and innovation. At the same time, AI’s impact on work is likely to be profound. Some occupations as well as demand for some skills will decline, while others grow and many change as people work alongside ever-evolving and increasingly capable machines.
This briefing pulls together various strands of research by the McKinsey Global Institute into AI technologies and their uses, limitations, and impact. It was compiled for the Tallinn Digital Summit that took place in October 2018. The briefing concludes with a set of issues that policy makers and business leaders will need to address to soften the disruptive transitions likely to accompany its adoption.
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8
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Artificial Intelligence and the Future of Humans

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, December 10, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Experts say the rise of artificial intelligence will make most people better off over the next decade, but many have concerns about how advances in AI will affect what it means to be human, to be productive and to exercise free will.
Digital life is augmenting human capacities and disrupting eons-old human activities. Code-driven systems have spread to more than half of the world’s inhabitants in ambient information and connectivity, offering previously unimagined opportunities and unprecedented threats. As emerging algorithm-driven artificial intelligence (AI) continues to spread, will people be better off than they are today?
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123
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Coming to Life: Artificial Intelligence in Africa

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, November 14, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The rapid uptake of disruptive technologies in Africa, such as mobile and financial technologies, is prompting speculation among tech investors about whether artificial intelligence (AI) applications will also take root on the continent.
A new issue brief by Africa Center Senior Fellow Aleksandra Gadzala, “Coming to Life: Artificial Intelligence in Africa,” mostly throws cold water on the idea. She acknowledges that many African nations still lack the statistical capacity, infrastructure, and good governance necessary to see AI take off. However, in a select handful of countries, AI solutions are already being successfully deployed at scale. Gadzala surveys the state of AI in Africa and discovers what these successful investments have in common, and what African governments need to do to strengthen the ecosystem necessary to see these technologies flourish, focusing on ways to foster a culture of research and innovation, improve investment environments, and strengthen policy frameworks so African nations can reap the full benefits of AI.
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12
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Artificial Intelligence – What implications for EU security and defence?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, November 8, 2018
Abstract in English: 
Consider a world where human decision-making and thought processes play less of a role in the day-to-day functioning of society. Think now of the implications this would have for the security and defence sector. Over the next few decades, it is likely that Artificial Intelligence (AI) will not only have major implications for most areas of society such as healthcare, communications and transport, but also for security and defence. AI can be broadly defined as systems that display intelligent behaviour and perform cognitive tasks by analysing their environment, taking actions and even sometimes learning from experience.
The complex attributes of the human mind are well known, but to replicate most of these abilities in machine or algorithmic form has given policymakers and scholars pause for thought. What is more, much of the concern generated by AI centres on whether such intelligence may eventually lead to post-human systems that can generate decisions and actions that were not originally pre-programmed. Accordingly, optimists argue that AI has the potential to revolutionise the global economy for the better, whereas some pessimists have gone as far as to forecast that AI will mark the end of modern society as we know it.
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8
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Artificial intelligence: a game changer for the world of work

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, June 5, 2018
Abstract in English: 
‘Whoever becomes the ruler of AI will become the ruler of the world,’ said Vladimir Putin in September 2017. The USA, Russia and China are all adamant that artificial intelligence (AI) will be the key technology underpinning their national power in the future.What place, then, is there for Europe in this context? The European Commission has recently set out a European initiative on AI which focuses on boosting the EU's technological and industrial capacity, developing an innovation ecosystem, ensuring the establishment of an appropriate legal and ethical framework, and preparing for socio-economic changes. This edition of the Foresight Brief presents the results of a mapping exercise on AI’s impact on the world of work. It looks at the issues of work organisation and infrastructure, introduces the idea of ‘AI literacy’ for the workforce (as a necessary complement to technical reskilling), and details several AI risks for companies and workers. It also looks at aspects related to algorithmic decision making and the necessary establishment of an ethical and legal framework.
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11
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Global Trendometer - Essays on medium- and long-term global trends

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Tuesday, July 17, 2018
Abstract in English: 
The EU faces challenges from the outside and the inside. Most of those are the symptoms of big underlying trends, and handling them needs foresight. The Global Trendometer tries to provide foresight for decision makers in the EU by analysing the changes in these long-term trends. This publication does not offer answers or make recommendations. It presents summarised information derived from a range of carefully selected sources. This issue of the Global Trendometer analyses long-term trends on India, the labour-share of income, and democracy and artificial intelligence. It also features two-pagers on geoengineering, remittances, food security in China, economic waves, the US after Trump, public procurement and deep fakes.
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56
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