Leading Irish academic appointed to specialist OECD committee on AI

14 Jun 2022

Edward McDonnell. Image: Nick Bradshaw

Dr Edward McDonnell was also recently appointed to Ireland’s Enterprise Digital Advisory Forum, which will see him work with experts to advise on Irish AI strategy.

The director of Ireland’s Centre for Applied AI (CeADAR) has been appointed to the OECD Global Partnership Committee on AI (GPAI).

CeADAR head, Dr Edward McDonnell, is the first Irish person to be appointed to the GPAI. The committee is an international initiative that was formally launched in 2020. It aims to promote the development of AI that respects human rights and democratic values.

The body has 25 members, including the US, UK, Australia, Canada and the EU. Ireland is a member by virtue of its membership of the EU.

McDonnell will join a group of international experts from industry, government, civil society and academia to advance cutting-edge research and pilot projects focused on the responsible use of machine learning and AI.

He described his appointment as “a great honour”, adding that “my appointment to the GPAI presents CeADAR with a great opportunity to influence the work of the committee and bring our own perspective”.

“The GPAI is working to ensure that the transition to the future of work and computing remains fair while respecting human rights and the democratic values which we all share.

“This is a significant transition phase in human history and the efforts of the GPAI will be key to facilitating international collaboration and promoting the adoption of trustworthy AI,” he concluded.

In March of this year, he was appointed to the Enterprise Digital Advisory Forum (EDAF).

The EDAF will advise and work with the Irish Government as it implements the business aspects of the new National Digital Strategy, as well as the National AI Strategy.

The forum will also relay the perspectives of industry leaders and experts to Government as it works to facilitate the adoption of AI digital technologies across industry.

In 2016, McDonnell spoke to SiliconRepublic.com as part of its Leaders’ Insights series about his job at CeADAR and his admiration for explorer Ernest Shackleton.

10 things you need to know direct to your inbox every weekday. Sign up for the Daily Brief, Silicon Republic’s digest of essential sci-tech news.

Blathnaid O’Dea was a Careers reporter at Silicon Republic until 2024.