On 14 December 2022, the United Nations Interregional Crime and Justice Research Institute (UNICRI) celebrated the fifth anniversary since it established its Centre for Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics in The Hague.
Since its establishment, the Centre has worked to advance understanding of how AI can be leveraged in the context of justice and security, as well as how malicious actors may seek to misuse it. The Centre has contributed actively to discourse around responsible AI through its work to develop AI governance systems and practical guidance for those working with AI. It has also worked directly with national authorities in Member States to enhance capacities to leverage the positive potential of AI and to do so responsibly. In doing so, the Centre has reached people and organizations across the world with the message of responsible AI innovation.
Addressing guests at the fifth anniversary celebration, Mr. Joel Hernandez, President of UNICRI’s Board of Trustees, commended the Centre’s work and observed that: “For the past five years, the Centre has served as UNICRI’s innovation arm, developing knowledge and understanding of the most promising technologies of our generation, and the next”.
Turning to the work of the Centre, Ms. Antonia De Meo, Director of UNICRI acknowledged the many potential applications of AI in the justice and security field that the Centre is exploring and commended its emphasis on the human.
“Whether it is in promoting a human rights-based approach to the use of AI in policing, ensuring a human in-the-loop during the use of facial recognition technology, or tending to the very human needs of both investigators and victims of online child sexual exploitation and abuse, our Centre always puts the human at the forefront of our work.”
As the Centre moves into the second half of its first decade, it will continue its work on responsible AI innovation, through projects such as the Toolkit for Responsible AI Innovation in Law Enforcement together with INTERPOL and with the financial support of the European Commission, and the AI for Safer Children initiative in partnership with the Ministry of Interior of the United Arab Emirates.
Speaking of the future, the Head of the Centre, Mr. Irakli Beridze, said that “The Centre will continue to innovate by bringing understanding of the risks and benefits of cutting-edge exponential technologies for the benefit of UN member states”.
To contribute to the work of the Centre, please participate in its recently launched public opinion survey on police use of AI and help shape the future of AI innovation in law enforcement.
Statement of the President of the Board of Trustees of UNICRI, Joel Antonio Hernández García
Statement of the Director of UNICRI, Antonia Marie De Meo