Strengthening Tech Governance
As digital platforms become increasingly entrenched in every aspect of modern life, developing new and thoughtful governance and regulatory structures is critical. The Institute convenes leading academics, policymakers, and stakeholders to reframe the debate around the governance of new and entrenched technologies and proposes new frameworks for governance in the networked era. The Institute engages stakeholders through its policy proposals and education programs, including its annual Tech Foundations for Congressional Staff, the AG Network Project, and ongoing convenings. The Institute also supports key work at Georgetown through collaborations with clinical programs and classroom education.
March 10, 2021 - Institute Tackles AI Ethics with U.S. Rep. Yvette Clarke & Roger McNamee at Launch of Equal AI’s “In AI We Trust?” Podcast
The Institute for Technology Law & Policy hosted the launch of In AI We Trust?, a new podcast with Equal AI’s Miriam Vogel (L’01) and World Economic Forum’s Mark Caine exploring the complex world of AI and ethics with thought leaders. The launch featured U.S. Congresswoman Yvette Clarke, a leader in AI ethics legislation, and Roger McNamee, world-renowned investor and AI ethics activist.
Institute Interim ED, Hillary Brill (L’00) highlighted how AI can improve our lives, safety, and happiness before raising the tricky issue at the heart of the panel: how to support innovation in technology in a responsible way.
In AI We Trust? co-host Vogel presented a positive view of AI, where technology is lawful and responsible, and supportive of civil rights, democratic norms, and consumer protections. With this in mind she prompted McNamee—a longtime successful venture capitalist—to explain his journey in technology and ethics to the audience: from Silicon Valley investor to activist for big tech regulation. McNamee, among other things, is the author of Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe, a ground-breaking investor in music distribution, and a successful musician, philanthropist, and activist. McNamee discussed with Vogel and Caine how the technology industry was never meant to become the big tech industry that it is today without having safeguarded essential responsibilities to society.
“Whoever cracks the code around diversity and inclusion is going to win,” stated Rep. Clarke. “Algorithmic accountability may not seem like it is a priority,” she continued, but “that is mistaken, because AI bias is inherently linked with [the COVID-19 and police brutality] crises. Increasingly, algorithms, instead of people, help determine whether Americans are hired for a dream job, approved for a mortgage, or sent to prison.”
McNamee lauded the Congresswoman’s legislative work and pleaded for a culture change in Silicon Valley—urging requirements that companies “must anticipate and mitigate harm,” which disproportionately affects women and communities of color.” Both McNamee and Rep. Clarke focused on potential solutions that include holding companies accountable.
The Institute for Technology Law & Policy at Georgetown hosted this livestream launch as part of its extensive research agenda on AI and ethics. Visit www.georgetowntech.org to learn about previous workshops, convenings, and current AI offerings at Georgetown University Law Center by expert professors that cover these issues and other issues central to technology and policy.