GLACIATION Project Bridges Privacy and AI for Common Good

12 Mar 2024

CORK, Ireland — On March 12th, 2024, University College Cork (UCC) hosted the highly anticipated GLACIATION project event, which brought together experts, researchers, and industry leaders from across Europe to explore the intricate relationship between advancing AI technologies and safeguarding personal privacy. Titled "Harmonising Privacy and AI across the Cloud-Edge Continuum," the conference provided a platform for critical discussions on the evolving landscape of AI ethics and privacy standards.

As a pioneering project, GLACIATION has been instrumental in developing a ground-breaking metadata fabric spanning the edge-core-cloud architecture. Through the strategic use of AI-driven optimization techniques, GLACIATION aims to minimize environmental impact while ensuring strict adherence to privacy regulations. By strategically locating analytics, the project aims to significantly reduce carbon emissions associated with data operations, while simultaneously enhancing data privacy.

The conference, chaired by Prof. Ken Brown of the Insight Centre for Data and Analytics, also showcased the GLACIATION project's strategic initiatives in integrating AI with privacy concerns, highlighting its commitment to ethical AI applications. Attendees gained insights into the project's innovative approaches to intelligent data routing and the development of an advanced metadata fabric. Discussions on-site and online revolved around the project's efforts to champion data sovereignty and enforce stringent ethical standards in AI, positioning GLACIATION as a leading voice in the discourse on privacy in the digital age.

Speaking at the event, Ms Roberta Lotti, Italian Ministry's Innovation Manager & GLACIATION Coordinator discusses insights and the importance of an ‘Artificial Intelligence-enabled’ in the public sector. She believes that the public sector and public administration can leverage AI-driven optimisation of data movement and operations for better services and a better quality of life for citizens.

UCC Prof. Barry O’Sullivan provided a complex picture of AI policy, its integration into society and AI development in the last years and the ways forward. The making of the first comprehensive set of laws on AI, the AIAct, of Europe, will provide frameworks for applications but also honour European fundamental rights.

Mr Bob Savage, Dell Technologies’ VP Regional CIO for EMEA shares industry views on #AI where “it is central to everything we do at Dell.” His company leverages AI to satisfy customers' satisfaction and push internal productivity while enhancing manufacturing processes as a daily practice. “We up-skill [AI skills] our staff every day,” Mr Savage said.

Prof Pierangela Samarati, a leading voice in privacy in the increasingly digital world, examines privacy with GLACIATION. She said data protection has challenges including such as requirements capture; policies; techniques & mechanisms for enforcing data protection. AI & privacy need strong considerations at all stages from modelling to applications.

A panel of industry experts & researchers discussed a series of tough questions about the nature of AI key techniques to keep and provide real information. The experts also shared their views on how GenAI is treating privacy and data when users are uploading to models. There’s a lot to learn about before using AI tools. It’s not just about AI but whole ecosystems of AI such as platforms, data, possible bias in data, and security.

GLACIATION Technical Coordinator Aidan O'Mahony, from Dell, concluded the event with a summary of the highlights and important points raised by the speakers and the panel.

The hybrid nature of the event, which allowed for in-person and virtual participation, ensured accessibility for attendees worldwide. This inclusive approach facilitated vibrant discussions and collaborations, further enriching the discourse on AI ethics and privacy.

As the GLACIATION conference concluded, participants left with a deeper understanding of the complexities involved in harmonizing privacy and AI. With the momentum gained from this successful event, the collective efforts of stakeholders will continue to shape the ethical landscape of AI applications, ensuring a future where technological advancements are balanced with respect for individual privacy rights.

School of Computer Science and Information Technology

Scoil na Ríomheolaíochta agus na Teicneolaíochta Faisnéise

School of Computer Science and Information Technology, Western Gateway Building, University College Cork, Western Road, Cork, Ireland