A Talk by Dr. Norberto Andrade from Facebook: Policy, Privacy and Artificial Intelligence

@Alejandra Acedo

Dr. Andrade began the conference by discussing the essence of technology as a “brute force for creation,” as the word is derived from the Greek word techne, defined as the art, skill or discipline by which something is achieved or created.

Dr. Norberto Andrade, Privacy and Public Policy Manager for Facebook gave a talk to our students from IE Law School bachelor’s and master’s programs about policy, privacy and artificial intelligence (AI).

At the conference, he covered topics of interest ranging from the professional future of students, to the essence of laws and technology, to their role at Facebook. Dr. Andrade began the conference by discussing the essence of technology as a “brute force for creation,” as the word is derived from the Greek word techne, defined as the art, skill or discipline by which something is achieved or created. Law, on the other hand, is the normative force that acts as an instrument of regulation for technology, focused on reality and determining what should exist and not exist. The intermediary between both of these is policy, which conciliates interests based on research that anticipates future development in technology.

Here are five highlights from the conference:

 

 

5 Key Takeaways

1. AI machine learning has existed since the 50s, but there are several reasons why it’s just now gaining traction.

The essence of intelligence lies in the ability to generalize when exposed to new data, based on a subset of data the machine has previously been exposed to. For example, as explained by Dr. Andrade, when a machine is exposed several times to pictures of cars, it will start to recognize cars in pictures it had never seen before based on characteristics it identified in the previous pictures. In this way, machines are able to learn without being specifically programmed. Now, AI machine learning is gaining traction due to the growing and extensive availability of data, greater computational power, and further emphasis on the policy-making side.

2. Facebook’s policy is to be open and transparent regarding AI technologies.

It’s important for professionals to have an accurate picture of the role the product has in the regulatory space. To achieve this, Facebook provides educational tools to explain the function of AI machine learning to the user, and they communicate openly when there are changes in their algorithm. They also just announced their privacy principles.

 

 

3. As a professional, you can tackle AI policy from a variety of perspectives.

If you are interested in pursuing a career in AI policy, there are various roles available. Some of these include direct research, which assesses, proposes and analyzes strategic solutions in the long- and short-term. Moreover, professionals can work with governments and industries in order to negotiate and implement solutions, create new products or define a strategy.

4. If you’re interested in pursuing a career in AI policy, you will be answering questions that shape the way we live.

How can we create systems in which humans have a meaningful role? Is there a human in the loop? Should there be a universal basic income? When designing policies, these are some questions that will come into consideration. Further topics of interest include employment, justice, and civil and human rights, among others.

 

 

5. You have 80,000 hours in your career to create a positive impact. How will you achieve it?

Dr. Andrade recommended the website 80,000 hours for advice on how to achieve a fulfilling and highly impactful career. They also provide a complete guide for working with AI, strategy and policy.

Following, is one of Facebook’s projects to create positive impact by using AI.

 

Dr. Norberto Andrade has extensive academic and professional experience that make him a leading professional in the field. He graduated from Universidade de Lisboa with a degree in Laws, and has two master’s degrees from the Central European University and the European University Institute, followed by a PhD and a Postdoc in Law & Technology from the European University Institute and the University of California, respectively. His professional experience ranges from being a Scientific Officer for Legal Policy at the European Commission, to a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at UC, Berkeley, and an Affiliate Scholar at the Center for Internet and Society at Stanford University. Currently, he works for Facebook, in Menlo Park, California.