Sustainability criteria for Artificial Intelligence – evaluation approach presented

The sustainability of AI systems is sometimes not in good shape. Among other things, AI systems are discussed for issues relating to discrimination, high energy and resource consumption, as well as the reproduction of social inequalities. In a new publication, the "SustAIn" project has presented comprehensive criteria for a systematic sustainability assessment of AI-based systems – eventually with the aim to promote more sustainable AI.
Taylor Vick | Unsplash

The increasing use of AI systems raises debates about their societal, environmental and economic impacts, such as non-transparent decision-making processes, discrimination, increasing inequalities, rising energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions in AI model development and application. Other discussions also relate to broader consequences on labor markets, consumption patterns or the market power of large corporations. This publication presents conceptional ideas for a comprehensive sustainability assessment along the AI lifecycle. We suggest sustainability criteria with corresponding indicators to encourage a systematic assessment of AI systems and to support making their development and application more sustainable.

Anne Mollen (she/her)

Senior Policy & Advocacy Manager

Photo: Julia Bornkessel, CC BY 4.0

As a Senior Policy & Advocacy Manager at AlgorithmWatch, Anne addresses ADM and sustainability, ADM at the workplace, and ADM in the public sector, the latter with a focus on AlgorithmWatch’s work related to German developments. She holds a PhD on technologies and people’s digital media practices in increasingly digital democracies from the University of Bremen. Anne has also been involved in many projects researching the interrelation between digital media technologies, society, and democracy.