Digitalisation is both an opportunity and a challenge for the civil service. Digital solutions for administrative routines - for example in the area of personnel and knowledge management – promise to make work easier. However, these may be offset by the risk of restricting the personal rights of employees and citizens when using AI applications. In particular, the use of Big Data applications for algorithmic decision support raises questions regarding issues of data protection, transparency, traceability, legitimacy, and legality, among others.
Do we know why a particular decision is suggested by a software solution? Do we need to know? What do we need to know? How can we determine where a certain application may or should be used?
These are the questions addressed by the AIT AI Ethics Lab’s new project "Digital Administration and Ethics" with the Austrian Federal Ministry for Arts, Culture, the Civil Service and Sport. The aim of this project is to develop a practical guide in several workshops between September 2022 and March 2023 together with civil servants, NGOs and scientists. This guide is intended to support the federal civil service in making decisions about the use of digital solutions, highlighting the opportunities and challenges of digitalisation and the use of AI.
The workshops will result in a practice guide for the Austrian federal civil service supporting decisions-making on the application of digital tools, importantly including AI-driven applications.
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