The European Commission has announced the launch of its Robotics4EU that aims to boost the use and adoption of responsible robotics within the European economy.
Indeed, the programme was officially launched in January 2021 so as to ensure the more widespread implementation of AI-based robots in the EU, especially within Healthcare, Inspection, and Maintenance of Infrastructure, AgriFood, and Agile Production. By doing so, the project aims to raise awareness around non-technological aspects of robotics, including ethics, legal, data, privacy, and gender issues.
In order to implement that, the Commission will be gathering a responsible robotics community with representatives from companies and academia. Altogether, they will organise community-building and events while advocating for the cause of responsible robotics. The Commission also surveyed the robotic community to gain insight on the deployment of robotics, current practices, and other key points that need to be mentioned.
Some of the issues that were raised were concerns about the labor force and the consequences of robotics on human well-being, among others. The programme also states information about good practices, robotics community readiness and robots’ acceptability, cooperation between policymakers and the robotics community, among others.
The project will also promote a GlobalSay, which is a consultation including 700 citizens from 12 countries who will be deliberating about the societal and ethical impacts of robotics. From November, a series of workshops will be launched in order to empower the responsible robotics community and encourage the debate around serious issues and ideas to adopt the responsible adoption of robotics.