Lean in, Lean out: The ethical considerations for AI in Reputation Management
Background: The CIPR has announced a series of activities in support of February’s global #Ethics Matter campaign. Organised by the Global Alliance for Public Relations and Communications Management, the second annual Global Ethics Month aims to raise awareness of the importance of ethics in communication across all disciplines and sectors. Over the course of the month the CIPR will share content during ethics month including blogs, webinars and its own social media campaign.
Aligned to the above theme CIPR is organising a Q&A session on ‘The ethical considerations for AI in Reputation Management’. AI in today’s world is ubiquitous. Our phone’s voice assistant uses AI; Gmail uses it predict what we’ll type next and auto complete; e-commerce sites rely on AI to make recommendations based on past purchases; mobile banking uses AI, as do Google Maps to give us directions; Alexa uses AI; and Netflix does it too!
For sometime now, PR professionals have also been using AI for low-skilled repetitive tasks such as developing coverage reports, dispatching press releases and creating media lists. As an industry PR has been largely optimistic about the adoption of AI as a positive disruptor; a force for good. However, as the usage of the technology grows we must be mindful of the ethical ramifications for the profession as a whole.
2020 was a year of fake news, COVID19, Black Lives Matter and the rise and rise of divisive politics. The events of the year sharply brought into focus ethical dilemmas on pervasive inequalities in technology and society. Many businesses responded to these societal conflicts by seeking to be more purpose driven, inclusive and authentic. Purpose became the buzzword for 2021! While we celebrate the rise of intention and purpose, it would be remiss not to ask the question: what is the equation between a purpose led business and a technology that at best is opaque? It is against this backdrop that we will consider AI and Ethics specifically around a) the inherent bias in AI juxtaposed against existing issues on diversity & inclusion b) Transparency c) privacy issues.
Guest: Anurag Banerjee, Co-Founder and CEO Quilt AI
Anurag Banerjee is the co-founder and CEO of Quilt.AI – a technology firm aimed at enabling scale, understanding and empathy between organizations/ institutions and the billions of people on the planet. Companies including Unilever, Amazon, Reckitt Benckiser, J&J and Visa along with non-profits including the World Bank, UNICEF, Girl Effect, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation leverage Quilt to better connect with their customers. Quilt AI is a ‘mission first’ technology company seeking to use the internet as a source of knowledge, inspiration and communications; to tackle issues around climate change, health inequity and gender inequity.
His entrepreneurial journey started in 2012 and now includes scaling multiple startups to double digit millions in revenue and raising more than $200MM in venture capital. This came after almost a decade at American Express. In his last role at American Express, he was responsible for managing and growing the largest 150 clients of American Express. Anurag has a Master’s in Organisational Development from Bowling Green State University and is a Harvard Business School alumnus.