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University of Warwick awarded share of £100 million AI funding for human-centred research on AI

The University of Warwick has been awarded a share of £100 million of government funding to research AI, including funding for a groundbreaking new project entitled ‘AI in the streets’.

‘AI in the streets’ is one project as part of the wider funding, which has been announced by the Department of Science, Technology and Innovation as part of a plan to ensure the UK’s leading status within AI research.

Spearheaded by researchers from the University of Warwick and Monash University in Melbourne, Australia with colleagues from University of Cambridge, King's College London and the University of Edinburgh, this project aims to explore the connection of responsible AI principles with the realities of AI implementation encountered in everyday urban environments. Non-academic collaborators from Careful Industries (London) will also be inputting who work on the social impact of technology as well as Coventry based artists Talking Birds who work to illuminate the profound and complex relationships between people and place.

In recent years, city streets have become the primary arena where the public interacts with various forms of artificial intelligence, including autonomous vehicles, surveillance systems, and other AI-driven technologies.

Despite significant policy initiatives promoting the societal benefits of AI innovation, such as safety, sustainability, and inclusion, the deployment of these technologies often reveals unforeseen challenges and complexities.

Professor Noortje Marres from the Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies at the University of Warwick and project lead said: “Our goal is to make visible the messy realities of how AI is experienced in the street, in the form of automated vehicles, facial recognition and AI-based apps.

“We want to use this insight to highlight the specific transformations, benefits, harms, and responsibilities that arise from "AI" in real-world settings, and to communicate these to AI scientists and industry representatives so that they, too, can learn from the street."

Funding for the project has come from the AHRC’s programme for Bridging Divides in Responsible AI (BRAID) and additional financial support provided by the Monash Warwick Alliance Co-Fund.

By collaborating with local partners and leveraging creative interventions, the project aims to foster a shared understanding of AI's impact on society among stakeholders and the general public."

The project's innovative approach has garnered interest from a wide range of stakeholders, including local and national government, public policy innovators, AI scientists, industry representatives, and researchers across various disciplines.

Through shared learning and collaborative efforts, the "AI in the Street" project seeks to pave the way for responsible and inclusive AI innovation in connected and automated cities.

For more information about the "AI in the Street" project and its partners, please click here.Link opens in a new window

Fri 22 Mar 2024, 10:23