Focus group

Several workshops with AI FORA’s focus group had been conducted that bring together stakeholders in participative arrangements in order to discuss and assess the societal implications of AI used in contexts of social assessment practices.

These workshops did not only provide the basis for data collection but were used to explore, test and evaluate workshop and session formats that contribute to the objective of developing unique workshop frameworks that spark inter- and transdisciplinary discourse on societal topics in environments of low-threshold participation.

Among several small-scale workshops, two major workshops took place in June and September 2019 that are briefly introduced.

In June 2019, a three-days workshop of 22 participants from nine countries took place in one of the intermediary sites in Northern Germany (Haus Sankt Ansgar, Kloster Nütschau). Participants with diverse backgrounds (academia, industry, legal consultancy, clerical organisations, and more) discussed the implications of AI use in social assessment contexts and revealed not only the relevance of professional backgrounds but also that of cultural imprints on attitudes and opinions on the use of AI technology to assess human beings.

A second major workshop was held in September in Berlin 2019. Representatives from six European countries presented their national AI strategies for discussion with German policymakers and senior civil servants, security services and NGOs to reflect on normative issues and context-dependency regarding social assessment applications.