OFCOM Vice Director Thomas Schneider Speaks About AI Convention At Third Jimmy Schulz Dinner in Berlin

OFCOM Vice Director Thomas Schneider Speaks About AI Convention At Third Jimmy Schulz Dinner in Berlin

On 21 March, the IGF-D and the IGF-D Secretariat – chaired by DENIC – invited to the third Jimmy Schulz Dinner in Berlin, in memory of the former Chairman of the Digital Agenda Committee. Jimmy Schulz was instrumental in promoting the Internet Governance Forum in Germany and was a strong advocate of the multistakeholder approach. He passed away on the day before the global Internet Governance Forum Germany 2019 after a long illness. The dinner series created in his honour is hosted by the current Chairwoman of the Federal Committee on Digital Affairs, Tabea Rößner, as patroness.

Each dinner is dedicated to a special focal topic and related experts are invited as keynote speakers. While in the previous year, UN Tech Envoy Amandeep Singh Gill spoke about the Global Digital Compact and Christopher Mondini – Vice President, Stakeholder Engagement, Europe and Managing Director for Europe – explained the role of ICANN in today's geopolitical context as a prelude to the ICANN78 conference in Hamburg, the topic dealt with at this dinner was the AI Convention of the Council of Europe. Ambassador Thomas Schneider, Vice Director of OFCOM and Chair of the Committee on Artificial Intelligence attended as guest speaker. He spoke about the international treaty and its focal issue, the protection of human rights in relation with the use of artificial intelligence.

Thomas Schneider - Vice Director OFCOM & Chair Committee on Artificial Intelligence

Only in the week before the dinner, the Committee on Artificial Intelligence achieved consensus after two years of negotiations and worked out a framework agreement. The aim of the AI Convention is to create a legal framework for the development and the use of AI systems. The AI Convention will be binding under international law for the states who sign the framework agreement. Any state is free to sign the agreement but if it does sign it is obliged to create national laws to implement the requirements of the convention. Not only the 46 member states of the Council of Europe participated in the negotiations but also countries like Great Britain, Israel, Canada or the USA.

Thomas Schneider's speech was followed by a lively discussion conducted under the Chatham House Rule.

Professor Wolfgang Kleinwächter giving his view

Next to members of the Digital Committee, various representatives of different stakeholder groups were present at the Jimmy Schulz Dinner. Tom Keller and Andreas Musielak of DENIC's Executive Board were also among the attendants.

We are very pleased about the lively exchange and thank all participants for the interesting discussions.

Sabrina Heber

Internet Governance / Public Policy Manager DENIC eG