Smart regulation for smart technologies

The project Disruptive technologies and rights-based resilience, supported by GSPI’s Impact Collaboration Programme (ICP), is well on its way!

In September 2021, the Geneva Academy, the United Nations (UN) Human Rights B-Tech Project, and the Centre for Democracy & Technology’s Europe Office co-organised a multi-stakeholder consultation that kick-started a round of interactive events which will bring together experts and policy actors over the next few months.

This consultative process aimed to highlight the necessity of a human rights-based approach to regulatory efforts in the technology sector. It allowed to collect expert perspectives on how the UN Human Rights B-Tech project can support states assess whether their regulatory initiatives directed at the technology sector align with the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs). It was attended by business, academia, civil society and state representatives.

Thanks to the ICP grant, the process will build on the knowledge developed and synthesised in the Working Paper The Relevance of the Smart Mix of Measures for Artificial Intelligence – Assessing the Role of Regulation and the Need for Stronger Policy Coherence by the Geneva Academy. Aimed at policy-makers, the technology sector and all those working on the regulation of AI, the paper brings fresh insights on how current initiatives on the regulation of artificial intelligence (AI) technologies could incorporate the protection and respect for human rights. The paper also calls on states to adopt a ‘smart mix’ of mandatory and voluntary measures to support their implementation and how this applies to the AI sector.

This GSPI-supported science-policy process will formally feed the development of a ‘UN Guiding Principles check’ tool (working title) which will provide states with a roadmap to assess their regulatory efforts across different policy domains relevant to technology.