The Global Index is designed to equip governments, civil society, and stakeholders with the evidence needed to advance rights-based principles for the responsible use of AI
How do we measure the evolution of commitment and progress on the implementation of responsible AI principles and practice?
About the Global Index on Responsible AI
There is a global consensus that AI must be used responsibly if societies around the world are to enjoy the benefits of AI while avoiding the risks associated with even greater social and economic inequalities. Practically, this means that the governance of AI must ensure that innovations are inclusive, accountable, environmentally sustainable, and uphold human rights.
Significant advances have been made on principles to guide the ethical use of AI, including the OECD Principles on AI Ethics and, more recently, the UNESCO Recommendation on Ethics in AI, but new approaches are required to advance the implementation of these principles for responsible, human rights-based AI within both the public and private sectors.
To make progress in advancing responsible AI, it is critical to know and understand the current state-of-play, as well as be able to track progress over time. This project will establish the Global Index on Responsible AI to address the need for inclusive, measurable indicators that reflect a shared understanding of what responsible AI means in practice, and track the implementation of responsible AI principles by governments and key stakeholders.
With this new evidence benchmarking the state of responsible AI use on a country by country basis, government and community leaders will be able to develop and implement plans to strengthen national initiatives to support the responsible use of AI and track progress moving forward.
A Human Rights-based Approach
The Global Index is a new rights-based tool being developed to support a broad range of actors in advancing responsible AI practices. It is intended to provide a comprehensive, reliable, independent, and comparative benchmark for assessing progress toward responsible AI the world over.
The Global Index will bolster the capacity of governments, civil society organisations, and other stakeholders in countries around the world to uphold rights-based responsible AI principles by providing analysis and benchmarking data to improve accountability, develop more precise policy interventions, refine best practices, and encourage regional and international cooperation.
One of the key innovations of the Global Index is the development of a fully-integrated human rights-based approach as a foundation for the comparative dimensions of the Index. This encompasses the codification of human rights obligations that align to accepted ethical AI principles and establish concrete benchmarks for responsible AI. In addition, the methodology is being developed to reflect national realities around the realisation of socio-economic rights, available resources, and the diverse conditions within individual countries, while assessing progress toward universally applicable benchmarks.
Establishing benchmarks for responsible AI
Assessing country conditions to support and promote responsible AI
Realising principles through implementation, evaluation and accountability
Providing evidence to decision-makers around the world to advance the responsible use of AI and promote digital inclusion
Inclusion & Participation
The Global Index will be co-created with a wide range of stakeholders to ensure its broadest possible use with a specific emphasis on including the perspectives of underserved and marginalised groups.
Fairness & Relevance
The Global Index will fairly reflect local contexts and realities and measure a country’s level of responsible AI in relation to available resources and capacities.
Accessibility & Openness
The Global Index and all data will be accessible to all stakeholders and researchers wishing to understand or re-use the data.
Coherence & Collaboration
The Global Index will align with other instruments being developed to support the responsible use of AI worldwide in partnership with key organisations like UNESCO and the OECD.
Who we are
Dr. Rachel Adams is Principal Investigator of the Global Index on Responsible AI. She is also the principal researcher at Research ICT Africa, where she directs the AI4D Africa Just AI Project and the AI4D African Observatory on Responsible AI. Rachel is an Associate Fellow of the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence at the University of Cambridge, Editor of the South African Journal on Human Rights, and a member of the UNESCO Expert Group on the Implementation of the UNESCO Recommendation on AI in Ethics.
Stephen B. Walker
Stephen is the Director of the D4D Global Research Hub and has led several international initiatives to advance the use of data for development. Prior to his work with D4D.net, he also led open government and data activities for the Government of Canada, led a range of Open Data for Development (OD4D) initiatives, was senior editor of the State of Open Data, and managed the International Open Data Conference (IODC).
Teki is a lawyer and a data privacy protection consultant based in Accra, Ghana. She is also the Founder and Executive Director of the Africa Digital Rights Hub, a member of the UN Global Pulse Privacy Advisory Group, and a non-resident fellow of the Center for Global Development. Teki holds an LLM in Information Technology and Telecommunications Law from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland and a Bachelor of Arts in Law and Political Science from the University of Ghana.
Urvashi is the Director of the Digital Futures Lab, a multidisciplinary research network based out of Goa, India, that examines the interactions between technology and society in the global South. She is also a Fellow at Chatham House and a Non-Resident Fellow at the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai. Prior to this, she was an Associate Professor at the OP Jindal Global University. Urvashi has a PhD in Politics and International Affairs from the University of Oxford.
Roland Banya is a Senior Economist at Research ICT Africa (RIA), where he works on projects related to AI, Digital/Future of Work, Cybersecurity, and Open Data. Previously, Roland worked at Genesis Analytics and Cenfri where he focussed on a range of work related to the digital economy. Roland has a MSc in Economic Development and International Finance from the University of Kent and a PhD in Finance from the Graduate School of Business at UCT.
Nicolás Grossman is a sociologist and journalist specialising in research and open data. Previously, he was the Data and Research Lead for the Global Data Barometer and led the Open Data and Data Journalism strategy of Properati, a private-sector platform using open data in Latin America. He has a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Buenos Aires and is concluding his Master’s in International Political Sociology at the National University of Tres de Febrero, where he studies the challenges of big data and AI in less developed countries.
Leo is a director and research lead at the Local Development Research Institute, a Nairobi-based think-tank whose work contributes to the efforts of African governments to end poverty, hunger, and reduce inequalities. She offers strategic advice and conducts research on how AI and data innovations can be harnessed to achieve sustainable development.
Nokuthula Olorunju is an attorney and researcher who holds an LLB and LLM with a focus on Cyberlaw/Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Law. She has written on issues of gender equality, human rights, AI, the judiciary, and is currently pursuing a PhD in the field of human rights and artificial intelligence.
Nawal is a researcher with experience handling a diverse set of projects for different organisations related to social and public research, as well as in information systems, data management, strategic planning, and policy analysis. Nawal holds a Master's degree in Information Systems with a major in Business Intelligence, a Bachelor's degree in Computer Science, and an Honours degree from the School of Mathematics, University of Khartoum.
Zara has a wide background in enhancing the visibility and impact of non-governmental organisations in South Africa. Zara has a Masters in Public Sociology and Anthropology. Prior to this, Zara worked at Sonke Gender Justice where she was involved in the development of campaigns aimed at combating gender-based violence. Her interests lie at the intersection of gender, equality, ethics, and accessibility to AI.
Kelly is a Policy Development and Research Advisor based in Cape Town, South Africa. She holds a Doctor of Jurisprudence and a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology & Philosophy, and has been working to advance the social, political, and technical capacities of persons across the Global South since 2006.
Mark is an attorney with over ten years of experience with several companies and think tanks, including Uber, Takealot, Media24, HSRC, and Research ICT Africa. Prior to this, Mark worked as an independent consultant on AI research projects for a number of organisations. Mark holds degrees in arts and law from the University of Cape Town and is currently pursuing his PhD at UCT.
Expert Advisory Committee
The role of the Expert Advisory Committee (EAC) is to oversee the scientific accuracy and global relevance of the Global Index. Made up of a diverse group of international experts on artificial intelligence, the EAC will play a key oversight role with respect to the inclusivity of the methodology and design of the Global Index. The group will also work to ensure that the Global Index builds on and complements existing activities to advance ethical and responsible AI.
The Expert Advisory Committee will:
- Advise on the scientific accuracy and relevance of the Global Index.
- Advise on priority areas and topics to be covered by the Global Index.
- Review the methodological framework and indicators of the Global Index.
- Promote the complementarity of the Global Index with existing activities and standards on responsible and ethical AI.
EAC Membership advances gender equality at all times and includes regional representation from across the Global South and Global North, as well as the participation of global organisations.
- The first meeting of the Expert Advisory Committee was held on the 23rd November 2021. Committee members discussed the importance of the Global Index in advancing enforceable rights-based governance of AI around the world.
- The second Expert Advisory Committee meeting took place on the 24th February 2022. The committee had an opportunity to discuss the human rights themes and selected indicators of the Global Index.
Expert Advisory Committee Members
Research ICT Africa
Responsible AI Institute
Senior Fellow, Technology and International Affairs Program
Carnegie Endowment for International Peace
Chief of Bioethics and Ethics of Science and Technology
Director of AI Initiatives
Global Partnership on AI
Digital Health Advisor and Co-founder
African Alliance of Digital Health Networks
Senior Research Fellow & Principal Investigator
Global AI Narratives | Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence, University of Cambridge
Head of Unit
Artificial Intelligence Policy Observatory - OECD
Director General of Smart Africa
Professor of Economics & Founding Director
Access to Knowledge for Development Center - American University in Cairo
Profesora Investigadora Asociada, Tecnológico de Monterrey
Feminist AI Network
Chair, Expert Advisory Committee
Research ICT Africa
International Centre of Expertise in Montreal on AI (CEIMIA)
Data Innovation & Policy Lead
UN Global Pulse
Data for Development Research Hub (D4D.net)
Founder and Executive Director
Africa Digital Rights’ Hub
Director and Founder
Digital Futures Lab, India
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