Childhood hosts AI Roundtable in Stockholm

Childhood and Global Child Forum  will host a one-day expert roundtable at the Stockholm Royal Palace on the potential and limits of artificial intelligence (AI) to help combat online child sexual abuse. Participation is by invitation only.

In order to harness the power of AI to safeguard children online, 40 experts and thought-leaders from business and academia, law enforcement agencies, regulatory bodies and child protection organisations will be convened to the global roundtable, under the patronage of Queen Silvia and King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden.

Online child sexual abuse and exploitation is growing exponentially. While technical developments promise impactful solutions, they do not sufficiently keep up with the harmful use of technology. There is an urgent need to intensify cross-sectorial dialogue and accelerate action.

The round-table will build on research, commitments and tools developed in ongoing collaborations and initiatives. The ambition is to gather stakeholder groups that usually do not meet, both those already working specifically on AI and online child sexual abuse, and those working on AI in other fields.

This one-day event will provide a neutral space where participants challenge and inspire each other, forge new collaborations, learn from each other and increase the number of actors and resources focused on fighting online child sexual abuse.

The challenge today

While tools which use combinations of technologies—such as facial detection, social network analysis and natural language processing—already exist and can be used to combat online child abuse, they do not yet meet all the challenges posed by online perpetrators. It is evident that new, innovative and coordinated approaches are needed to accelerate action to combat child abuse online.

The challenges of fighting online child sexual abuse are influenced by a complexity of factors, many of which are non-technological. These challenges include legal limitations, lack of harmonized responses, online privacy issues, weak technological attainment of some of the most in need police-forces, lack of investment in new tools as well as the technological limitations of today. To strive for a world free of online child sexual abuse means tackling all of these issues.

Text: Åsa Andreasson Åkerström, photo: Joel Borgström