Artificial intelligence solutions offer significant opportunities for innovations and smart city development, but at the same time, the needs and concerns of end users needs to be carefully considered. In November, a project was launched in Tampere to develop artificial intelligence applications and their design methods together with companies, utilizing the knowledge and methods of applied human-centric technology.
The aim of the project is to create knowledge for application development, which makes artificial intelligence applications meaningful, understandable, acceptable and ethically sustainable for their users. Users are involved early in the development so that their needs and concerns can be addressed in design. The application areas are selected from the key areas of the smart city utilization of artificial intelligence, such as smart mobility and solutions for sustainable urban development.
Smart urban development is moving towards a more human-centered and holistic perspective. The human-centered artificial intelligence solutions in the urban area project contributes to this, says Minna Kinnunen, Business Advisor, Business Tampere.
Collaboration is done closely together with businesses, City of Tampere and end users. As a result of the development work, new UI solutions, methodological recommendations for human-centered artificial intelligence design and ethical guidelines will be created. At the same time, the knowledge and innovation potential of the companies developing and utilizing artificial intelligence will increase.
Ethical dimension in development
The potential impact of applications based on artificial intelligence on human behavior and decision-making is greater than any previous technology. The ethical dimension has been identified as one of the most important and multi-dimensional challenges in the development of artificial intelligence, while engineer-driven technology organizations have expressed a strong need to incorporate such a philosophical-humanistic understanding into development processes. As part of the development work, international discoveries in the field of artificial intelligence ethics will be brought together and applied to local needs.
“There are some fairly straightforward and some rather difficult challenges in the ethics of artificial intelligence. It is quite straightforward to say that all universally applicable ethical principles, such as respect for autonomy and privacy, avoidance of harm, the promotion of well-being and justice, also apply to the context of artificial intelligence. It is more difficult to say what they require in more detail in local circumstances and how to ensure that ethical considerations are taken into account in practice. In addition, artificial intelligence poses a whole new set of ethical challenges, such as the ‘black box’ problem of explainability, which the above-mentioned universal principles do not quite capture,” says Professor Arto Laitinen from Tampere University.
Tampere Region as the heart of applied AI
The development work is being carried out as part of the Tampere AI Hub artificial intelligence center at Tampere University. The work will make a major contribution to Tampere Region’s reputation as a forerunner in human-centered artificial intelligence. At the same time, the profile of Tampere Region will be strengthened as the heart of applied artificial intelligence.
Tampere AI Hub’s focus so far has been on intelligent machines. The project expands AI Hub’s field of activities to artificial intelligence applications for people’s everyday and working lives, and makes Tampere AI Hub a strong hub for human-centered artificial intelligence, says Professor Kaisa Väänänen from Tampere University.
The human-centered artificial intelligence solutions in the urban area project is a development project funded by the EU (through Council of Tampere Region), Tampere University and Business Tampere. It involves five research groups at Tampere University: human-centered design, user interface development, social technology, machine learning and the ethics of artificial intelligence. The project started on November 1, 2019 and continues until April 30, 2022. The project has a budget of approximately EUR 920,000.
Professor, Tampere University
Information Technology Unit, Human-Centered Technology
tel. +358 40 849 0731
Original photo: Jonne Renvall / Tampere University
Additions (binary digit): Jonna Lähdemäki / Tampere University