Brussels Privacy Symposium 2021 Report
On November 16, 2021, the Future of Privacy Forum (FPF) and the Brussels Privacy Hub of Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB) hosted the Brussels Privacy Symposium 2021 – The Age of AI Regulation: Global Strategic Directions. The event, convened by Jules Polonetsky, CEO of FPF, Christopher Kuner and Gianclaudio Malgieri, Co-Chairs of the Brussels Privacy Hub (BPH), brought together policymakers, academic researchers, civil society organizations and industry leaders from the European Union (EU), the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the United States, Brazil, and Singapore to discuss the most recent trends in the governance of Artificial Intelligence (AI), with a focus on addressing the risks posed by AI systems to fundamental rights, while fostering their responsible development and uptake. A new report from FPF’s Sebastião Barros Vale, Katerina Demetzou and Lee Matheson summarizes and offers context to the discussions at the event.
The 2021 Brussels Privacy Symposium was the fifth-annual academic program jointly presented by the BPH and FPF. In this context, the Symposium’s panelists debated the proposal for a legal framework that the European Commission (EC) published in April 2021 (AI Act), a first-of-its-kind comprehensive law for AI systems, which comprises a risk-based approach by scaling legal obligations to the severity of risks that specific AI systems pose. Furthermore, speakers drew comparisons between the proposed EU model and different approaches to AI regulation that are surfacing elsewhere – such as the US, Brazil, Singapore, and China.
The keynote panel, which covered the EU’s road ahead to the proposed AI Act and was moderated by Gianclaudio Malgieri, BPH Co-Director and Associate Professor of Law at EDHEC Augmented Law Institute (Lille), counted on:
- Brando Benifei, Member of the European Parliament, President of the Spinelli Group
- Lucilla Sioli, Director for Artificial Intelligence and Digital Industry (CNECT.A), DirectorateGeneral CONNECT at the European Commission
The following panel saw a Global Comparative Discussion on Approaches to AI Regulation, Governance and Oversight, moderated by Dr. Gabriela Zanfir-Fortuna, Vice President for Global Privacy at FPF and Affiliated Researcher at the VUB’s Research Group on Law, Science, Technology & Society (LSTS). Speakers included:
- Simon Chesterman, Dean and Provost’s Chair Professor of the National University of Singapore Faculty of Law and Senior Director of AI Governance at AI Singapore
- Luca Belli, Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation at Fundação Getúlio Vargas (FGV) Law School
- Audrey Plonk, Head of Digital Economy Policy Division – Directorate for Science, Technology and Innovation, OECD
- Elham Tabassi, Chief of Staff, Information Technology Laboratory of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
The last panel was titled Should Certain Uses of AI Be Banned?, and it was moderated by Ivana Bartoletti, Global Chief Privacy Officer at Wipro and Co-Founder of the Women Leading in AI Network. Speakers included:
- Theodore Christakis, Professor of International and European Law at University Grenoble Alpes
- Frank Pasquale, Professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School
- Cornelia Kutterer, Senior Director, EU Government Affairs, AI, Privacy and Digital Policies, Microsoft
- Ursula Pachl, Deputy Director General at the European Consumer Organisation (BEUC)
To learn more, read the report.