The Report reflects on the outcomes of the
Artificial Intelligence: How Can Youth Take Part an online seminar organised by the Council of Europe’s Youth Department from 23 to 27 November 2020. With 82 participants representing young people, youth workers, trainers, AI specialists and
human rights experts, the seminar aimed to map relevant
stakeholders and processes involved in AI governance relevant for youth and identify policy gaps that prevent young people from taking part in AI governance.
Additionally, the seminar aimed to strengthen the role of the youth sector in advocating for the active participation of young people in AI and to develop approaches and resources for AI literacy for the youth sector.
The conclusions of the seminar include: agreement that there is no universal definition for AI, AI literacy or AI governance and that different stakeholders approach the topic from different perspectives, with different outcomes in mind. Improving AI literacy is at the core of improving youth participation and AI governance. Most resources around AI are only available in English, which acts as a barrier to the participation of young people from non-English speaking countries. A common topic raised by various speakers was the lack of transparency when it comes to the functioning and real impact of AI. This transparency issue has also led to a general absence of accountability when it comes to the impact AI has on our daily lives. Participants and expert speakers also noted the great speed at which AI is evolving, meaning participation and governance should be a continuous process, not a single event. Human rights experts also pointed to the human rights frameworks that are generally relied on to assert our human rights; however, many of these instruments predate the deployment of AI and caution is needed as to whether they are adequate for regulating AI. A key conclusion from the week was the role that youth organisations have as watchdogs in preventing AI from violating human rights.