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Press Release

2nd ‘AI for Good Global Summit’ takes action to ensure AI benefits humanity

ITU leads United Nations dialogue on Artificial Intelligence (AI)




Geneva, 06 February 2018


The 2nd AI for Good Global Summit at ITU Headquarters in Geneva, 15-17 May 2018, will take action to ensure that Artificial Intelligence (AI) accelerates progress towards the United Nations' Sustainable Development Goals.

The summit is organized by ITU with support from the XPRIZE Foundation, the global leader in incentivized prize competitions, the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and sister United Nations agencies including UNESCO, UNICEF, UNCTAD, UNIDO, Global Pulse, UNICRI, UNODA, UNIDIR, UNODC,IFAD and WFP.

The AI for Good series is the leading United Nations platform for dialogue on AI. The action-oriented 2018 summit will identify practical applications of AI and supporting strategies to improve the quality and sustainability of life on our planet.

"As the UN specialized agency for information and communication technologies, ITU aims to guide AI innovation towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals," says ITU Secretary-General Houlin Zhao. "We are providing a neutral platform for international dialogue to build a common understanding of the capabilities of emerging AI technologies."

"As XPRIZE utilizes incentive competitions and crowdsourcing as a means to activate teams from around the world to solve an SDG-related grand challenge, we anticipate that the majority of those teams that compete to win an XPRIZE will innovate solutions with AI," says Marcus Shingles, CEO of the XPRIZE Foundation. "Thus, we are very supportive of the 'AI for Good' movement, and we continue to be inspired by and learn from this ecosystem, many of whom will attend this summit."

"Achieving the true potential of AI to benefit humanity will demand clear strategies devised in concert by government, industry, academia and civil society. The AI for Good series is setting these strategies in motion," says ACM President Vicki Hanson.

The 2nd AI for Good Global Summit will continue to formulate strategies to ensure trusted, safe and inclusive development of AI technologies and equitable access to their benefits.

'Breakthrough teams' will demonstrate the potential of AI to map poverty and predict natural disasters using satellite imagery, how AI could assist the delivery of citizen-centric services in smart cities, and new opportunities to provide access to AI-powered medical breakthroughs through low-tech interfaces. They will also investigate the potential of Blockchain technology to support trusted, transparent AI development. 

Teams will propose impactful AI strategies able to be enacted in the near term, guided by an expert audience of mentors representing government, industry, academia and civil society.

Strategies will be evaluated by the mentors according to their feasibility and scalability, potential to address truly global challenges, degree of supporting advocacy, and applicability to market failures beyond the scope of government and industry.

"The summit will connect AI innovators with public and private-sector decision-makers, building a collaboration to take forward promising strategies," says Chaesub Lee, Director of ITU's Standardization Bureau.

It builds on the success of the ground-breaking 2017 AI for Good Global Summit in June 2017, the first event to launch inclusive global dialogue on the actions necessary to ensure that AI benefits humanity.

The 2018 summit is kindly supported by the following Gold Sponsors: ACM, the Kay Family Foundation and the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.  

For more information about the 2018 AI for Good Global Summit, please visit bit.ly/AIforGood2018

Make sure to follow the conversation via #AIforGood