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Can AI solve sustainability? As featured in Raconteur

Can AI solve sustainability? As featured in Raconteur

In their latest special report, Raconteur have explored the impact of sustainability on business. At a time where climate change is becoming a priority for consumers and companies alike, are business doing enough to benefit sustainability? Christian Gladwell, our Global CEO, spoke to Jim McClelland about the implications of AI in the media sector. AI may be a flawless solution to many, but Christian explains the limitations of AI and why we need a human layer:

“Artificial Intelligence (AI) is often assumed to be binary, pitting automation and humans against each other, but it’s not a question of either or – it’s about leveraging both to increase efficiency. Ultimately, AI relies on human insight to function to its true potential and support a sustainable society.

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“Our societies rely on two key concepts of human interaction: nuance and context and machines struggle with both. Whilst providing solutions to the automation of repetitive tasks, AI needs human supervision for corrections, guidance and initial application, that’s why the current best in class AI experts refer to keeping humans “in the loop”. For example, AI can enhance the efficiency of renewable energy by identifying patterns that highlight a need for increased energy to ensure supply meets demand. Yet it still requires humans to determine such a solution in the first place, as machines need to be programmed to deliver against the key objectives or to be supervised so decisions are still deferred to humans to make. Without that deference to humans for a final decision, we run the risk of algorithms making at best, insensitive decisions at worst, potentially dangerous ones. There have been examples of Uber’s surge pricing algorithm increasing ride prices during terrorist related attacks in major cities – insensitive to say the least.

“We risk losing the human element within this argument, which is crucial for utilising technology to drive sustainability. AI is one approach that will help deliver a sustainable future and to overcome the challenges in this area, we need to utilise our human experience and learnings gained from years of research to enhance the capabilities of this technology.”

Read the full article which delves further into the pros and cons of AI for sustainability on Raconteur now

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