idalab seminar #15: What makes an algorithm ethical? – Defining and implementing a Quality Criteria Catalogue for Algorithms

Algorithms are increasingly relied upon in decision making processes that can have far-reaching implications for all of us. They help doctors diagnose diseases and develop treatment plans. They tell police officers where to patrol. They decide who is going to be invited to the job interview. If these decisions are made by people and the way they decide seems harmful or unjust, our laws enable us to hold them accountable for their actions and correct them if necessary. Principally, these laws are based on what we, as a society, regard as ‘ethical’. But algorithms make decisions differently and are able to make decisions that human beings can’t, because of the amount of data they can take into consideration. Thus, if we wish to hold algorithms accountable for the decisions they make, we need to define the ethical standards that they’re meant to hold up to.

In this seminar, Carla will present the project “A Quality Criteria Catalogue for Algorithms” of the Bertelsmann Stiftung. Among others she will discuss the questions “What standards of quality could algorithms be held to?” and, one step further, “How is it possible to make sure that these standards are actually being implemented?”

Friday, December 7th, 5 pm | doors open at 4.30 pm | Potsdamer Straße 68, 10785 Berlin

It will also be possible to watch the event live via our Vimeo Account. The link to the event will also be shared via Twitter and Linkedin.

You can also find the event on Meetup and join the idalab seminar Meetup-Group.

About idalab seminars: idalab seminars are open to all interested parties. Once a month, we invite scholars, data scientists, business experts and big data thought leaders to discuss their work, gain new perspectives and generate fresh insights.

After the talk, we invite you to stay for drinks. We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

Carla Hustedt is a Project Manager in the Ethics of Algorithms project of the Bertelsmann Stiftung. She holds a Master in Public Policy from the Hertie School of Governance and Master in Public Administration from the London School of Economics, with a focus on e-governance and behavioural economics. She founded a human rights NGO and worked for a global Public Affairs consultancy. In her current work, she is taking a close look at the societal consequences of algorithmic decision-making, hoping to contribute to the development of technology that can ultimately facilitate greater social inclusion. She sees herself as a neo-generalist, a convener and an intermediary between different stakeholders and discourses on algorithms and AI.