Decision-making with AI in connected places and cities: Developing an ethical and responsible innovation rooted approach for public value creation
Two Hughes Hall Research By-Fellows, Dr Maya Ganesh and Dr Kwadwo Oti-Sarpong, are part of a winning ‘AI-deas’ research team selected for funding from the new AI@Cam mission.
Public sector use of AI is growing, with some local authorities in England already using large language models and predictive analytics to make city-scale decisions. It is important that the use of AI to make decisions is ethical and leads to the desired outcomes.
The successful project
This project aims to investigate how local authorities in England are using AI to make decisions about issues such as placemaking, land use and mobility, and sustainable water supply systems to create public value. The project will develop resources for local authorities to make ethical and informed choices and the use of AI as part of digitalisation initiatives.
The Department of Engineering will lead this project and facilitate collaboration with local authorities, and among experts in other domains including urban governance, philosophy and ethics.
Dr Kwadwo Oti-Sarpong, AI-deas challenge lead, said: “We’re excited to be one of the winners of AI-deas and work on this project with practitioners across disciplines to shape the future of public sector decision-making using AI in creating connected places.
“Understanding how to practically root AI use in ethical considerations, and showing how that can be done, will significantly change how we create the future we want.”
Collaborating on the project with Drs Oti-Sarpong and Ganesh are:
- Dr Jennifer Schooling FICE OBE, Department of Engineering
- Dr Li Wan, Department of Land Economy
- Dr Viviana Bastidas, Department of Engineering
- Dr Ramit Debnath, Department of Architecture and Cambridge Zero
- Dr Manuel Herrera, Department of Engineering
- Jerry Chen, Department of Land Economy
What is AI-deas?
AI-deas aims to develop ambitious, multidisciplinary research programmes that apply AI innovation to pressing real-world challenges. The five projects supported by AI-deas will spin up research teams, develop collaborations with business, policymakers, and civil society, and take innovative ideas from the lab to application. ai@cam will support these challenges to get off the ground through seed funding and access to expertise, networks and support. For more, see AI-deas projects.
The winning AI-deas projects will…
- improve understanding, diagnosis and treatment of brain diseases and mental health disorders
- develop cheaper, less invasive and more accessible AI-driven healthcare diagnostics that can be used throughout the conception to childhood journey
- build tools to assess common language and communication challenges and provide tools and technologies to support people with language and communication related disabilities
- develop resources for local authorities to make ethical and informed decisions about the use of AI in their digitalisation initiatives
- help decision makers find more targeted and effective solutions to the twin climate and biodiversity crises, by using AI to provide better data and evidence
What is ai@cam?
ai@cam is University of Cambridge’s flagship mission on AI, created to drive a new wave of AI innovation for the benefit of science, citizens and society. Through research funding, partnerships within and outside of the university, and education, ai@cam aims to more powerfully connect what happens in the university lab to the outside world. AI-deas is ai@cam’s first major initiative. More information here.