Policy Forum for Ireland

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Next steps for the regulation of AI in Ireland

Morning, Tuesday, 23rd April 2024


This conference will focus on next steps for the regulation and development of artificial intelligence in Ireland.


It will be an opportunity for key stakeholders and policymakers to examine priorities for implementation of the EU AI Act, which reached parliamentary approval in March 2024 to enact the world's first binding AI law.


Delegates will discuss what the EU legislation will mean for the actions and targets laid out in the National AI Strategy, drawing on the DETE’s AI - Here for Good: Progress Report on the National AI Strategy, published in August 2023.


Those attending will also assess implications of the EU AI Act for the development, adoption and implementation of new AI technology, looking at concerns over adopting a risk-based approach, key priorities for trust and AI ethics, how Ireland can best realise the benefits of trusted AI across sectors, and identifying how Irish and European AI technology can build and retain competitiveness in a global market.


Further sessions will look at priorities for businesses and innovators, including what support will be needed for tech companies, SMEs and spin-outs to make new AI tools compliant with EU law, options for the development of regulatory sandboxes, and how Ireland can best continue to attract FDI from large global tech companies.


We are pleased to be able to include keynote sessions with: Gabriele Mazzini, Senior Expert, AI Policy Development and Coordination, European Commission; Dr Barry O’Sullivan, Full Professor, School of Computer Science and IT, UCC; Member, AI Advisory Council; and former Vice Chair, High-Level Expert Group on AI, European Commission; and Professor Gregory O’Hare, Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Head, School of Computer Science and Statistics, Trinity College Dublin.


Overall, areas for discussion include:

  • Ireland’s AI landscape: progress on the delivery of the National AI Strategy - next steps - assessing the emergence, development and use of generative AI - preparing for regulation - gauging trust
  • EU AI Act: priorities post-agreement - adapting Irish law - benefits and challenges of a risk-based approach - support for business innovators - assessing the criteria for designating high-risk AI
  • challenges: concerns over resource requirements for making new AI compliant - developing fair and effective standards - building trust - ensuring the ethical development and use of AI
  • priorities for businesses and innovators: providing clarity and support, including for SMEs - developing fair and effective standards for AI - maximising benefits in AI use
  • regulation: key legislative priorities for developing regulatory sandboxes to safely test AI innovations - assessing the role of regulators and how they can work together
  • workforce: assessing the impact of AI on the workplace - safeguarding workers’ rights and employer interests - examining key skills priorities - securing the talent pipelines and attracting talent
  • international cooperation: understanding differing approaches to AI regulation post-Brexit - options for developing an international approach
  • policy: priorities for transposing the EU AI Act - assessing its place alongside existing legal frameworks, such as the DSA and GDPR law - facilitating a smooth transition

The conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to consider the issues alongside key policy officials who are due to attend from DETE; AFBI, NI; CAFRE; DCEDIY; DSIT; Department for the Economy, NI; DBT; DESNZ; DfE; DfT; Education Scotland; GLD; HMRC; Home Office; IPO; NAO; Ofcom; OPSS; The Scottish Government; and the Welsh Government.



Keynote Speakers

Professor Gregory O’Hare

Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Head, School of Computer Science and Statistics, Trinity College Dublin

Dr Barry O’Sullivan

Full Professor, School of Computer Science and IT, University College Cork; Member, AI Advisory Council; and former Vice Chair, High-Level Expert Group on AI, European Commission

Keynote Speakers

Gabriele Mazzini

Team Leader, Architect and Lead Author, AI Act, European Commission

Dr Barry O’Sullivan

Full Professor, School of Computer Science and IT, University College Cork; Member, AI Advisory Council; and former Vice Chair, High-Level Expert Group on AI, European Commission

Professor Gregory O’Hare

Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Head, School of Computer Science and Statistics, Trinity College Dublin

Chairs

Louise O’Reilly TD

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Workers' Rights, Enterprise, Trade and Employment

Senator Malcolm Byrne

Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science

Speakers

Dr Martin Clancy

Founder, AI:OK; Senior AI Research Fellow, Dublin City University; and Insight and Policy Fellow, Trinity Long Room Hub, Trinity College Dublin

Professor Dave Lewis

Deputy Director, ADAPT Centre

Karine Perset

AI Unit Lead, Division for Digital Economy Policy, OECD

Mary Connaughton

Director, CIPD Ireland

Karl Flannery

Chief Executive Officer, Storm Technology

Dr Adrian Byrne

Trustworthy AI Lead, CeADAR

Dr Stephen Donoghue

Case Manager, Knowledge Transfer, Environment, NovaUCD

Brian McElligott

Partner and Head of Artificial Intelligence, Mason Hayes & Curran