Task Force on AI & Society launches report on future of artificial intelligence at York University

3d rendering robot

The report, which was released Nov. 16, urges research to explore the broader human perspective of AI, including its ethical implications.

Amir Asif
Vice-President Research & Innovation Amir Asif

The task force analyzed artificial intelligence (AI) and society, which was identified as key area for growth at York, and offered recommendations to position the University as a future global centre of excellence for teaching and research in this field. The report, titled Fostering the Future of Artificial Intelligence: Report from the York University Task Force on AI & Society, is the result of the task force’s work to develop ideas and examine options for building and featuring York’s research strengths in AI. Key recommendations from the report include expanding York’s faculty strength through strategic cluster hiring of researchers with interests in core technical topics; developing interdisciplinary curriculum initiatives with new academic programs and research partnerships across the Faculties; and establishing a University-resourced platform such as an Organized Research Unit, that serves as a showcase to attract students, partners and donors.

“The goal is to explore the whole spectrum of possibilities for research, development and innovation in artificial intelligence, data governance and associated disruptive technologies as well as the applications and impact of such technologies on society,” says Amir Asif, vice-president research and innovation. “York’s research in AI will contribute to core theory and technological applications in a broad spectrum of areas, including social sciences and humanities, health, business, and law, and aims to provide a broader human perspective, including the ethical implications of AI on humanity and society.”

York currently offers more than 80 AI-related courses across six Faculties as well as three master’s degrees in AI supported by the Vector Institute for Artificial Intelligence, and two AI certificate programs. More than 90 faculty members are currently engaged in AI-related research, contributing to core theory and technological applications while also providing broader perspectives including the impact of AI on humanity and society.