Abstracts are invited for the workshop “The Ethics of Data Science: The Landscape for the Alan Turing Institute”, to be held on November 30, 2015 at the Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, UK. This event is being organised as part of a series of activities promoted by the Alan Turing Institute (ATI) in order to define the national and international landscape around data science and to support the ATI’s scientific programme.

Data science provides huge opportunities to improve private and public life. However, such a potentially high positive impact is coupled to significant ethical challenges. The extensive use of increasingly more data (Big Data), the growing reliance on algorithms to analyse them and to make decisions (machine learning), as well as the gradual reduction of human oversight over many automatic processes pose pressing issues of fairness, responsibility, and respect of human rights.

The workshop will be a major occasion to gather leading experts from different fields in order to discuss these issues and to share information and views on the ethics of data science. In particular, papers presented during the meting will focus on the following topics:

  1. The ethics of data. The definition of ethical principles ensuring fair data handling and protection of individual rights while using large datasets for scientific or commercial purposes.
  2. The ethics of algorithms. The analysis of ethical problems and of the responsibilities and accountabilities of designers and data scientists with respect to unforeseen and undesired consequences as well as missed opportunities concerning the design and deployment of complex autonomous algorithms.
  3. The ethics of practices. The identification of the appropriate ethical framework to shape a deontological code about responsible innovation and data management to ensure ethical practises fostering both the progress of data science and the protection of the rights of data subjects.

Dates, instructions, and timeline

The workshop will be held at the Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, on November 30, 2015.

500-word abstracts (MS Word or PDF format) can be submitted to Dr Mariarosaria Taddeo by October 1, 2015. Authors will be notified of the outcome by October 15, 2015.

Authors planning to submit an abstract are kindly requested to contact the workshop organisers, Professor Luciano Floridi and Doctor Mariarosaria Taddeo, by September 21, 2015 in order to notify their intention.

Authors of the accepted abstracts will be invited to participate in the workshop and to submit a full paper by February 1, 2016.

Contact information

Mariarosaria Taddeo, mariarosaria.taddeo@oii.ox.ac.uk, Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford, 1 St Giles Oxford OX1 3JS, United Kingdom