Dubai, 27 March 2019: Smart Dubai, the government body tasked with transforming Dubai into the world’s smartest and happiest city through innovation, organised the first meeting of its Artificial Intelligence (AI) Ethics Advisory Board, with the inaugural gathering finalising an operational roadmap to govern the board’s future direction.  

Comprising representatives of leading government departments and private sector entities, the board has been formed to shape the development and deployment of human-centered ethical AI to encourage fairness, transparency and accountability in AI systems in Dubai. The first of three meetings to be held in 2019 took place on Thursday, March 19, during which the board members discussed the vision, mission and objectives they aspire to achieve.

The advisory board has been designed to create a multi-stakeholder collaborative platform and an ongoing dialogue, enabling board members to share knowledge and expertise around human-centered AI and to explore viable policy instruments that can more readily adapt to evolving AI technologies. Dubai. The board’s remit covers the exploration of practical application and considerations of AI ethics in Dubai and the offering of strategic advice on the development pathfrom soft regulation to responsible and trustworthy innovation in AI field.

Smart Dubai’s AI Ethics Advisory Board is chaired by H.E Younus Al Nasser, Assistant Director General of Smart Dubai and CEO of Smart Dubai Data, with board members including Hessa Al Balooshi, Director of Smart Services Department at Smart Dubai; Dr. Okan Geray, Strategic Planning Advisor at Smart Dubai; Fadi Salem, Director of Policy Research and Future Government at The Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government; Marwan Bin Haidar, Executive Vice President, Innovation and the Future at Dubai Electricity and Water Authority; Khaled AlRazooqi, General Director of the Artificial Intelligence Department at Dubai Police; and Dr. Marwan AlZarouni, Director of Information Services at Dubai Electronic Security Centre; Cyrus Hodes, Expert Group member from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Board members from the private sector include Bashar Kilani, Region Executive at IBM Middle East; Hazar Alzaki, Head of Government Affairs at Microsoft Gulf; Selim Edde, Head of Public Policy and Government Relations at Google; and Erica Crosland, Senior Associate at Eversheds Sutherland.

Commenting on the first meeting of the AI Ethics Advisory Board, H.E Younus Al Nasser said: “I am very pleased with the conclusion of our inaugural meeting, which saw fruitful and interactive discussions and resulted in a productive outcome. The first meeting saw the representatives of the government departments and privates sector organisations work together to draw up a roadmap aimed at setting out a clear path towards achieving our goal of creating an ethical framework of reference for the use of AI in the UAE. This strategy forms part of Smart Dubai’s vision of the future, in conjunction with the views of our leadership, which continuously aims to transform challenges into opportunities to further serve the community.”

He added: “The advisory board has been formulated to accommodate the rapidly changing technology landscape by proposing suitable policy instruments that can more readily adapt to evolving AI technologies. The board aims to provide assistance, guidance, and recommendations, as well as enable further research and the development of the ethical implementations of technological solutions.”

The first meeting of Smart Dubai’s AI Ethics and Principles Advisory Board follows on from the launch of the Ethical Principles & Guidelines for AI implementation, announced in January 2019. The protocol aims to be an ‘Ethical AI Toolkit’ that allows AI users and providers to assess their offerings and to work on ensuring the highest levels of responsibility, probity and good governance when developing AI applications and solutions.