Making News

UNIDO Contributes To the Artificial Intelligence for Good Global Summit

GENEVA — On the sidelines of the Artificial Intelligence for Good Global Summit, the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and other members of the United Nations family held panel sessions on “The Future of Work”, “Smart Cities and Communities”, and “Promoting Equality in Access to Artificial Intelligence”.

Organized jointly by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) and the XPRIZE Foundation, the summit was held between 7 and 9 June in Geneva.

The “Future of Work” panel discussed the impact of artificial intelligence (AI) and automation on jobs in developing countries, infrastructure and skills bottlenecks for the absorption and uptake of new technologies and AI, and demographic issues.

During the discussion, Olga Memedovic, Chief of UNIDO’s Business Environment, Cluster and Innovation Division, emphasized the impact of AI and the New Industrial Revolution on industries, value chains and developing countries and regions. She said that incentives are needed for lifelong-learning, private sector involvement and for the global community to create knowledge-sharing platforms to better understand AI creation, diffusion and absorption.

The session on smart cities addressed the role of cities in sustainable development and the AI-related challenges for city planners. It focused on the pressing issues for cities in developing countries, including growing urbanization rates, pollution, and lack of infrastructure, public services and utilities. The session concluded that city planners should introduce open and transparent AI systems for the maximum benefit of the urban population.

ITU Secretary General, Houlin Zhao, hosted a working lunch with representatives of all the participating UN entities to discuss opportunities for further cooperation on AI issues. He thanked UNIDO for its cooperation and substantive input.

The summit gathered representatives of the private sector, academia, civil society and international organizations. It was dedicated to the Artificial Intelligence (AI) development and its applications in health, public administration and industry (e.g. automotive and electronics). The summit also addressed social inclusion of disadvantaged groups; human rights, privacy and data protection; standards and interoperability of data platforms; policy, regulatory and ethical aspects; and public-private partnerships.