What we do

Our primary purpose is to connect doctoral and postdoctoral researchers that are investigating the ethics of AI. We connect through a variety of events such as reading groups, masterclasses, and mini-conferences. As we are located all over the globe, we rotate timeslots for our events to ensure that people in all timezones can attend some events.

All of our internal events are organised via our SLACK workspace. Many of these events are also posted to our LinkedIn members group. Public-facing events are announced on this website and in LinkedIn posts. Members join through our LinkedIn page and then can request an invite to the SLACK member’s workspace. Membership is restricted to: PhD students, research students (i.e. Master’s by Research or Philosophy), Post-Doctorates, recent PhD graduates, and early career researchers who hold a research degree.

In December 2021 we held our one-year anniversary planning meeting to celebrate our growth to 300 members and to brainstorm what we would like to see in 2022. The collaborative strategy plan is being finalised at the end of Jan 2022 when we will select from the many great brainstorming ideas, what we want to focus on in our second year. Just a few of those ideas have been added below, expect to see more added to this page in Feb 2022.

Reading Groups

We have several internal reading group meetings throughout the year. Topics are all focussed on the ethics of AI and are selected by the group. Members are encouraged to suggest academic papers or book chapters in the field of AI Ethics. Members are also encouraged to volunteer to host reading groups. As we are scattered across many timezones, it is helpful to have members from various geographic regions contribute to this core function of our group.

Masterclasses

Several times a year the group invites leading experts in the ethics of AI to come and speak to the group and lead new discussions. Masterclasses are restricted to members only.


Conferences

Once a year we host an external-facing conference. At this event, members will present some of their work in 5 or 10 minute vignettes. Only members and invited keynote experts are able to present, but attendance is open to everyone.

Non-members can sign up to email updates to be informed when these happen. Go to Contact page to do that.

Guiding aspiring PhD candidates

One of the most frequent requests we received in the first year, was from people who were looking at getting into a PhD program in AI Ethics. Whilst our membership criteria restricts acceptance to those who have already enrolled or graduated from a research higher degree, we felt this was an important area for us to address. Starting in 2022 we will run several sessions a year in different geographic time-zones for our members to provide peer guidance on what it’s like doing a research degree in AI Ethics and share their experiences and advice.

Internal – research in progress presentations.

Commencing in 2022 we will be running two types of internal presentation programs for members. One type is for members to practice their research pitch and ideas to their peers to gain real-time feedback; this stream is called “Thinking out loud”. The other is called “Dangerous Ideas”, whereby members will be encouraged to share methodologies in their research, especially if their methods are novel, different, or even controversial!

Specialty sub-groups

As we grow we have found sub-groups forming. We have a group that is focussed on health-related AI Ethics issues which meets to discuss papers related to that field. New in 2022 a new sub group is being formed to focus on legal issues.

LinkedIn

Our group started on LinkedIn, this platform remains an important professional face to the wider community. Members share resources, job opportunities, and their successes on this platform. LinkedIn is also the entry point for new members as well as a way to explore in more depth the expertise of each member.

Our group’s LinkedIn page is here.

SLACK

We use the productivity platform SLACK for organising our group and informal discussions about the ethics of AI and the PhD journey. It is on the SLACK space where most of our chatting and informal networking happens. Our SLACK site is for members only.

.