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22 Mar 2023

European Center for Not-for-Profit Law

CSOs launch framework for enabling meaningful engagement of external stakeholders in AI development

"Empowerment: A framework for enabling meaningful engagement of external stakeholders in AI", 22 March 2023

ECNL and SocietyInside, in collaboration with numerous contributors from all sectors, have been developing a Framework for meaningful engagement of civil society, affected communities and other external stakeholders in the context of human rights impact assessments of AI systems. Collectively mapping out a practical process to empower genuine collaborative problem-solving can result in beneficial, human-centered and sustainable AI development. 

The Framework articulates minimum conditions for engagement and uses these as a baseline for involving companies, public entities as well as multilateral bodies during AI design and development. These conditions build on the UN Guiding Principles on Business on Human Rights (UNGPs) with the goal of embedding respect for rights and dignity for people. It seeks to improve the outreach to and quality of stakeholder engagement, with necessary emphasis on groups who are most at-risk of harm from AI systems. The Framework includes tools that are empowering and constructive to support co-creation and positive collaboration, delivering three key elements of meaningful engagement: Shared Purpose, Trustworthy Process and Visible Impact.