Artificial Intelligence Bootcamp at the Austrian Parliament

The Innovation in Politics Institute recently hosted an Artificial Intelligence Bootcamp for members of the Austrian Parliament. Rather than a traditional lecture or presentation format, the day was structured around discussions, in which policy makers could raise their questions and concerns directly with experts in the field of AI.

The Politics of AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) is a strategic technology that is being developed and deployed at a rapid pace across the world. It has the potential to transform our lives for the better: to improve healthcare, reduce energy consumption, predict climate change, and to reduce waste in manufacturing. It can also help to detect cybersecurity threats and fight crime. Yet it also brings with new challenges, raising a series of major legal and ethical questions. Lawmakers need to understand both the benefits and risks of AI to ensure that its applications are always in line with the best interests of citizens.

The Bootcamp

The Bootcamp was developed to empower parliamentarians in their growing involvement with AI, allowing them to understand the latest developments and their implications. The sessions covered three topics:

  • AI and Climate Change
  • Fundamental Ethical Questions of AI
  • AI and Medicine

Speakers included Prof. Oliver Zielinski (Oldenburg University, German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence) and Prof. Giovanni Rubeis (Karl Landsteiner University of Health Sciences). The discussion was moderated by Helfried Carl of the Innovation in Politics Institute. The workshop took place on 22 November 2021.

Participant Feedback

Katharina Kucharowits, MP, Social Democratic Party of Austria
Member of the Committee for Research, Innovation and Digitisation

In everyday political life, we rarely have the opportunity to discuss specific important topics in depth, together with experts, but also across political groups, and to think them through thoroughly. I think it is important to create offers like the AI Bootcamp, and for MPs to take advantage of them. I think it‘s incredibly important
to get expert input from different disciplines, to deal with it and to understand AI and
its impact on all of our lives – whether positive or negative. Thank you very much for
organising this bootcamp, I recommend this format with its great experts to all of my colleagues.

Maria Theresia Niss, MP, Austrian People’s Party
Spokesperson for Digitisation, Research and Innovation

At the AI Bootcamp for the Austrian Parliament, experts in the field of artificial intelligence presented and discussed the future of work, medicine, ethics and climate change in relation to AI in an understandable way. Together we worked out the technical foundations, fields of application and opportunities of AI. Especially when it comes to technically complex topics, offers such as the AI Bootcamp are of great importance to us as policymakers, allowing us to ensure quality in legislation. Many thanks to the Innovation in Politics Institute for the excellent organisation!

To find out more, or to arrange an AI Bootcamp for your organisation, get in touch with us here.