Global forum to discuss United Nations Centennial Initiative

Thursday, Sep 09, 2021 14:30

NovaWorld Phan Thiet (Binh Thuan) will be built into a leading healthcare and wellness tourism destination.

A number of ideas and strategies on the United Nations Centennial Initiatives are explored at the three-day high-level online Policy Lab which opened on Tuesday.
Titled Fundamental Rights in AI and Digital Socities: Towards an International Accord, it is sponsored by the Club de Madrid and Boston Global Forum.

The digital revolution is shaking the foundations of our societies and the immediate rollout of AI technologies promises even greater societal disruption. These technologies bring new opportunities for the enjoyment of human rights, but also new threats to their protection.

Policymakers around the world and at all levels of government are becoming more convinced of the need to ensure that digital technologies and AI serve people and not the other way around.

The event seeks to find methods to narrow this gap between the digital and policy worlds, and to build consensus around a rights-based agenda for the global governance of AI and digital societies.

The topics discussed at the forum are the UN Contennial Initiative launched in 2019 by the United Nations Academic Impact in partnership with The Boston Global Forum.

The initiative hosts roundtable discussions, conferences, new concepts, solutions, think pieces, and reflections to look ahead to the global landscape in 2045, the United Nations’s centennial year.

The core concepts of the UN Centennial Initiative include the idea of a social contract for the artificial intelligence (AI) age, a framework for an AI international accord, an ecosystem for the AI World Society (AIWS), and a community innovation economy.

Some of these ideas have already begun to be put into practice, including the evolution of an AIWS City being developed by NovaWorld in Phan Thiet, Viet Nam, on a pilot basis.

AIWS City is a virtual digital city dedicated to promoting the values associated with AIWS. It looks to bring together a global enlightenment community of scholars, innovators, leaders, and citizens dedicated to fostering thought, creativity, and ethical behavior.

Professor Dr Tran Dinh Thien, senior advisor to the Vietnamese Prime Minister, expressed excitement at NovaWorld Phan Thiet City being built into a leading healthcare and wellness tourism destination: “NovaWorld Phan Thiet and AIWS City will become a model, representative of the standards and ambitions of the United Nations Centennial Initiative and the World Leadership Alliance-Club de Madrid.

“Viet Nam invites world leaders, ideologists and innovators to Phan Thiet to support the plan to build NovaWorld Phan Thiet City… We look forward to receiving unique ideas and suggestions to help Phan Thiet develop and become a leading ecosystem for a new economy, one for those looking to pioneer in the Age of Global Enlightenment, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the United Nations.”

Ramu Damodaran, co-chair of the United Nations Centennial Initiative, will be the lead speaker at the Plenary V session which will discuss the United Nation’s Centennial Initiatives.

The panel will also feature the former president of Latvia, Vaira Vike-Freiberga, a member of the Club de Madrid; Greek Minister of State and Digital Governance Kyriakos Pierrakakis, who is chair of the Global Strategy Group, OECD; Thomas Patterson, research director of The Michael Dukakis Institute for Leadership and Innovation and professor of government and the press at the Harvard Kennedy School; Sean Cleary, advisor to Club de Madrid, executive vice-chair of the FutureWorldFoundation and member of the Carnegie Council artificial intelligence & equality initiative’s board of advisors; and Thien.

The facilitator for the session will be David Silbersweig, chairman, department of psychiatry, and co-director of the Institute for the Neurosciences, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard University Professor.

Ahead of the meeting, the Boston Global Forum teamed up with United Nations Academic Impact to release a book titled ‘Remaking the World: Toward an Age of Global Enlightenment’.

The book takes a major step towards creating a “rights-based agenda for the global governance of AI and digital societies,” Nguyen Anh Tuan, who edited the book and serves as CEO of the Boston Global Forum, said.

“We’re moving toward a framework, an ecosystem, a social contract for the AI age.”

The book is made up of white papers, speeches, remarks, and other presentations at events held during the pandemic and sponsored or co-sponsored by the Boston Global Forum.

Among the contributors are well known policy makers and innovators such as Ashton Carter, former US Secretary of Defense; Vint Cerf, ‘the father of the Internet’ and chief internet evangelist for Google; former UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon; and former Massachusetts Governor Michael Dukakis.

The opening chapter, authored by leading scholars and policy makers affiliated with the Boston-based group, proposes a “social contract,” or an agreement among members of global society to cooperate in the interests of social wellbeing.

Elsewhere in the book, political scientist Nazli Choucri of MIT articulates a framework for artificial intelligence international accords, including “the precautionary principle,” which aims not to impede innovation but to “explore the unknown with care and caution.”

Likewise, Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, discusses the need for an AI “ecosystem of trust.” This would include regulation “not for regulation’s sake,” but for the purpose of protecting basic rights, encouraging innovation, and spurring technological leadership.

Tuan added that Remaking the World, along with the Policy Lab, represents the first time that prominent international leaders are coming together to lay the groundwork for global AI accords.The book is currently in an electronic edition and will be available in print soon.

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