The increasing use of artificial Intelligence and Big Data holds much promise – and peril. Algorithms are more than lines of neutral code: a 2016 New York Times op-ed highlighted some of the most egregious instances of algorithmic discrimination: recidivism risk assessments pick on black defendants; delivery services are unavailable in predominantly minority neighbourhoods; and women find themselves less likely to be shown advertisements for well-paid jobs on major online search engines. The rise of the on-demand economy will bring these problems into new areas, from work for algorithmic bosses to travel: an HBS study found clear evidence of discrimination on Airbnb.
 
It is unlikely that algorithms are designed to discriminate explicitly. Different mechanisms are at work: underlying data sets might suffer from historical biases, and software aggregating user ratings has the potential to aggregate and amplify individual users’ subconscious biases. This makes the ascription of (legal) responsibility to platforms a particularly challenging question: who is responsible for algorithmic discrimination? How could algorithms be policed and sanctioned?
 
This exploratory workshop, sponsored by the John Fell Fund, will bring together a range of disciplines to explore legal, economic, and technical aspects of algorithmic discrimination. Interested participants are asked to register here by Friday, 20 April.
 
 
 
PROGRAMME
The Cube, Oxford Law Faculty 
A light lunch will be served from 1:15 for registered participants
 
14:00 Measuring and Mitigating Algorithmic Discrimination
Krishna Gummadi
Max Planck Institute for Software Systems
14:15 Discussant: Barbara Havelkova, Oxford Law
14:20 Discussion
 
14:35 Holding Online Platforms Liable for Discriminatory Advertising
Katherine Strandburg
NYU School of Law and Information Law Institute
14:50 Discussant: Vili Lehdonvirta, Oxford Internet Institute
14:55 Discussion
 
15:10 Antidiscriminatory Privacy
Ignacio Cofone
NYU Information Law Institute
15:25 Discussant: Rebecca Williams, Oxford Law
15:30 Discussion
 
15:45 Gender Pay Gaps in a "Gender Blind" Labour Market: The Cost of Caring
Abi Adams
Department of Economics and New College, Oxford
16:00 Discussant: Denise Réaume, Toronto & Oxford Law
16:05 Discussion