Dihal and Dillon Win Major Grant from Templeton World Charity Foundation

Professor Toshie Takahashi, Prof. Shuji Hashimoto (Vice President of Waseda University), and members of the Global AI Narratives team – Dr Sarah Dillon, Dr Kanta Dihal and Dr Stephen Cave – at the Global AI Narratives Tokyo workshop.

Faculty members Dr Kanta Dihal and Dr Sarah Dillon have been awarded a major research grant from the Templeton World Charity Foundation to fund the Global AI Narratives project (GAIN) based at the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence, with Dr Stephen Cave and Dr Beth Singler. The project aims:

  • to understand how different cultures and regions perceive the risks and benefits of AI, and the narrative influences that are shaping those perceptions;
  • to foster new thinking about AI around the world by disseminating and promoting science fiction and nonfiction narratives about AI from underrepresented regions and groups;
  • to connect local academic experts on perceptions and communication of AI with each other, and with writers and artists around the world.

The project is funded under the Templeton’s Beyond the Turing Test challenge, part of its Diverse Intelligences initiative.

GAIN will run from 2018 to 2021. The first phase of the project consists of ten one- to two-day workshops. Each workshop will take place in a different region outside the UK and North America, and disseminate its respective findings to each other and to our North American and UK partners. In each workshop, we will invite an interdisciplinary group of researchers and practitioners from fields related to AI narratives, such as science fiction scholars, artists, AI researchers, philosophers, writers, and anthropologists. These collaborations will foster underrepresented voices that are currently absent from global AI debates. The first two workshops took place at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore, and Waseda University, Tokyo, in September 2018. The next workshop will take place in India in Spring 2019.

The main output from GAIN‘s progenitor project, AI Narratives, which focuses on Western anglophone narratives of artificial intelligence, will be published by Oxford University Press in 2020: AI Narratives: A History of Imaginative Thinking About Intelligent Machines, edited by Stephen Cave, Kanta Dihal and Sarah Dillon.