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About the Workshop

Artificial Intelligence and Big Data are deeply embedded in our societies, culture and plays a crucial role in shaping our perceptions of democratic governance and communication. Nevertheless, they also have the potential to create an anti-democratic environment for citizens. Addressing a range of ethical and socio-technical considerations to ensure that AI is developed, deployed, and used in ways that align with human values and promote positive outcomes for society, consists of a great challenge, known as responsible AI.

"AI, Big Data, and Democracy Task Force" is a group of projects (AI4Gov, ITHACA, KT4D, ORBIS) funded in the context of addressing the above challenge. The Task Force operates within an interdisciplinary framework, drawing on various theoretical perspectives to address the complex intersection of AI, big data, and democracy. Informed by democratic theory, it considers principles of participation, representation, and deliberation to understand and navigate the impact of emerging technologies on democratic governance. Ethical considerations guide its work, emphasising fairness, transparency, accountability, and privacy while exploring the socio-technical innovation's impact on democracy and societal structures. Finally, governance models and innovation theories inform discussions on how to effectively manage and regulate emerging technologies.


Registration Closed

Workshop Date

7th March 2024

11:00 - 15:00

Event Format

The event consists of a deep-dive workshop, expected to last 3 hours (with 1 hour intermission break). The first part will consist of short keynotes of AI Democracy & Ethics experts followed by a short panel discussion. The second part will be a series of live demonstrations of modern tools for using AI in deliberative settings. Audience will have an opportunity to get a hands-on experience with those tools, while feedback will be gathered using Slido, Mentimeter and Miro platforms.

Registration Closed


Workshop Programme (7th March 2024)

AI, Big Data and Democracy Workshop Programme
Time Title Presenter
11:00 - 12:30 Part 1: A theoretical grounding on conducting responsible AI in democratic processes, via a series of short keynotes (tentative list):
  1. AI and Democracy: Risks and Opportunities (Prof Keith Hyams, University of Warwick, UK)
  2. Online Deliberation: Bridging Theory and Practice (Prof Anna De Liddo, Open University, UK)
  3. Trustworthy and Explainable AI in Policy Making: How can we enhance trustworthiness, fairness and explainability of the modern AI by enabling humans to reason about the outcomes of AI-based models. (Fabiana Fournier, IBM Research, Israel)
  4. Aiming for participatory democracy and the inclusion of vulnerable groups: challenges, aspirations and lessons (Michael Bedek and Maria Zangl, University of Graz)
Replay (Part 1)
PPTX (Part 1) Download the presentation slides
12:30 - 13:30 Coffee Break
13:30 - 15:00 Part 2: Demonstration and hands-on experience of a series of technological tools that address this challenge:
  1. BCause: Reasoning for change: A Structured and Decentralised Discussion System for Distributed Decision Making
  2. DemocraticReflection: collective intelligence platform to harness real-time audience feedback over live debates
  3. DISPUTool: A tool for Mining and Exploring arguments in US Presidential Election Debates, adapted to deliberative democracy debates
  4. AI4Gov: A Self-Explained Visualisation Workbench: a Bias Detection Toolkit that empowers policymakers, researchers, and practitioners with understanding tailored for detecting biases in AI systems
  5. ORBIS: On the development of a dashboard for deliberation analytics
Replay (Part 2)
PPTX (Part 2) Download the presentation slides


A Photo of Organiser Anna De Liddo

Anna De Liddo

Professor of Human-Computer Interaction and Director of Research
Knowledge Media Institute
The Open University

Anna De Liddo is Professor of Human-Computer Interaction and Director of Research at the Knowledge Media Institute of the Open University (UK). Her research focuses on the study of Collective Intelligence facilitated through new forms of Dialogue and Deliberation. She leads the Intelligent Deliberation Group (IDea) which investigates theories methods and tools for citizen engagement and public deliberation in urban informatics, e-democracy and social innovation contexts.

A Photo of Organiser Lucas Anastasiou

Lucas Anastasiou

Research Associate
Knowledge Media Institute
The Open University

Lucas Anastasiou is a Research Associate at the Knowledge Media Institute (KMI) of The Open University. He holds a PhD in Computational Argumentation and his research interests are in Collective Intelligence, Evidence-Based Reasoning, Sensemaking, collaborative and informed decision-making processes.

A Photo of Organiser Ilaria Mariani

Ilaria Mariani

Politecnico di Milano

Ilaria Mariani, Ph.D. in Design at Politecnico di Milano, is a Researcher at the Department of Design, Politecnico di Milano. Her work integrates communication, interaction, and service design with a strong emphasis on both qualitative and quantitative data analysis. Her research explores complex interactive systems for design-driven innovation in the public sector, investigating how design can facilitate digital transformation.