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AI for the People (LAW-DS-AIPEO-22)


Department LAW
Course category LAW Intensive Seminar - 3 credits
Course type Seminar
Academic year 2022-2023
Credits 3 (EUI Law credits)
Contact Law Department administration,
  Course materials

24/05/2023 9:30-12:30 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

24/05/2023 14:30-16:30 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

25/05/2023 9:30-12:30 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati

25/05/2023 14:30-16:30 @ Sala del Consiglio, Villa Salviati


The academic debate is very much focusing on the dark side of AI. Think of Calo, Pasquale, Hildebrandt, Staab or Zuboff, just to name a few. But the question remains if and how AI could be used to the benefit of the people. The seminar will start with presenting a project the three of us have been developing over the last five years – It is an attempt to create a tool for the automated detection of unfair terms of services and unfair date privacy policies. The deeper understanding behind is that claudette could empower the people, each of us as well as the law enforcement authorities. The seminar will start with introducing claudette in showing where we are standing and how claudette operates not only in English but also in Italian, German and Polish. We will use concrete example, terms of services and privacy policies just to demonstrate what the added value could be.
From there we will dig deeper into ‘empowerment’, a loaded term which became fashionable with the rise of neoliberalism in whatever shade. However, empowerment has a long history and dates Galbraith’s concept of countervailing power. One might also wonder whether there is a possible link to the trade union movement. We will investigate in which way the digitalization of the economy and the society allows for building new forms of countervailing power/empowerment. There has been ample research full of practical examples to demonstrate the power but also the weakness of online power building. A collective action bubbles up but then collapses rather quickly. This phenomenon leads to the unanswered question of whether the forms of countervailing power building require a different understanding of ‘institutions’, which are able to deal with the fluidity of the new forms of countervailing power.

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Page last updated on 21 September 2018

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