Notables - December 19, 2018

Josh Wheeler
December 20, 2018

By Craig Bamford

Brookfield AI Policy Tour begins producing findings

Welcome to Notables for December 19th, 2018!

First this week: Brookfield's AI tour continues.

As mentioned in Notables in September, the Brookfield Institute for Innovation and Entrepreneurship is touring the country, holding a series of "AI Futures Policy Labs". The Labs project is a partnership with the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR), and is intended to explore the future of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Canada: what capabilities exist, how it can be used to assist policymakers, and how policy can best be crafted to meet the challenges posed by ubiquitous AI.

Since the Toronto pilot, the tour has visited Edmonton, Vancouver, and most recently Ottawa on November 26th. While the report for the Ottawa Lab isn't available yet, reports for both Edmonton and Vancouver are. The report on the Edmonton lab looked at the development of "North Star" guiding values for the use of AI-based housing apps, the appropriate role of machine learning in legal research and due diligence, and how AI can help with medical diagnoses. It also featured a discussion on "decolonizing science and technology" with the University of Alberta's  Dr. Kim Tallbear who "highlighted the need for space within the AI R&D community for Indigenous peoples to participate as collaborators, scientists, developers, and regulators".

Meanwhile, the Vancouver lab approached similar issues, albeit within a different context. Vancouver's tight housing market led to a discussion of employing AI to limit the amount of discrimination against tenants from marginalized and racialized groups. They examined how AI can "monitor student attention" to assist exceptional or challenged students, but that also respects student privacy.  And in the legal sphere, they suggested that lawyers should be required to disclose the use of AI-based tools, and that AI-driven applications should be made freely available by governments to avoid exacerbating inequalities in the legal profession.

Social Innovation Canada examines current

state of social innovation in Canada

Finally this week: social innovation.

Social Innovation continues to be a hot topic in the wake of the government's announcement of $750 million in funding over the coming years.  Enter Social Innovation Canada, which brings together a host of Social Innovation organizations, including Toronto's Centre for Social Innovation, Atlantic Canada's Inspiring Communities, and RADIUS SFU in British Columbia. They're surveying the social innovation field in Canada, and have assembled a report of their ongoing conversations entitled "Findings from the Field"

The report asked 750 social innovation practitioners across Canada what a social innovation network should look like: what its vision, values, design principles and functions should be. The practitioners said that the biggest thing that was lacking was a common vision, and coordination of organizations to implement that vision. There was too much siloing, too little sharing of best practices and inspiring ideas, and too little access to key influencers. The desire to correct these deficiencies is part of the reason why Social Innovation Canada was formed. The vision, meanwhile, is built around four key pillars: creating navigation, wayfinding and connections for organization; capacity-building; knowledge-sharing; and "aligning for action" by creating coordinated efforts between different social innovation organizations and enterprises.

To read the report yourself, click here.

Notables is a weekly collection of interesting science, technology, investment and innovation reports, press releases and other news bytes from around the web. Notables are curated and written by Craig Bamford.

Have a report or press release you want to share? Let us know!

The views and opinions expressed in this piece are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of RE$EARCH MONEY.


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