Telenor Group stands behind Europe’s newly published guidelines on Artificial Intelligence

The European Commission’s High Level Expert Group (HLEG) on Artificial Intelligence today released “Ethics Guidelines for Trustworthy Artificial Intelligence (AI)” to promote the development and deployment of trustworthy and ethical artificial intelligence. Telenor Group, one of two operators representing the telecommunications industry in the HLEG, fully supports the Guidelines published today.

Published: 8 April 2019 14:00

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Telenor Group sees Europe’s proactive approach to the development of trustworthy, ethical AI foundations as a strong start to fostering a solid, rights-based, self-regulating innovation ecosystem. The HLEG work is an example of important multi-stakeholder dialogue and public engagement on such a complex topic as ethical AI, to which the telecommunications sector is well positioned to contribute.

“Artificial Intelligence ethics is a complex topic with unsolved challenges that leaders of industry and of policy will need to come together to help solve for the good of the wider society. The Ethics Guidelines, released by the European Commission today, are a good example of that and a starting point for such discussions in Europe and globally. Europe has a strong role to play in enabling ethical AI and the many benefits it can bring to consumers and societies,” said Dr. Ieva Martinkenaite, VP Telenor Research and member of the HLEG on Artificial Intelligence.

“I am pleased that the Commission recognised the importance of the telco industry in developing an AI strategy in Europe and invited us to join this process. Trust in the development, deployment and use of AI is vital for an ethical, innovative technology ecosystem to thrive in Europe,” she added.

Intended to encourage more self-regulation among industry players, the Guidelines draw out three overarching requirements for Artificial Intelligence development:

  • AI should be lawful, complying with all applicable laws and regulations
  • AI should be ethical, ensuring adherence to ethical principles and values
  • AI should be robust, both from a technical and social perspective

In addition, the Guidelines call for developers to ensure that the development, deployment and use of AI systems have human agency and oversight, are technically robust and safe, ensure privacy and data governance, are transparent, accountable and are developed with diversity, non-discrimination, fairness, environmental and societal well-being in mind.

In a statement from ETNO, the Association representing Europe’s leading telecom operators, the telecoms sector sees AI as an enabler of improvements in communication technologies and services. Better customer service, smarter network deployment and development of new data-driven services are just some of the ways in which telecom operators are deploying AI to improve their operations.

The Guidelines are available here.