About us / Case study

Partnering with trade unions for AI accountability

Overhead photo of a group of people standing in a network pattern with lines connecting them.
IFOW have been instrumental in bringing new perspectives to the AI and tech debate, especially around the future of jobs. Anna and the team have helped inform our work as a union, and made us better equipped to contribute to wider work by the TUC, CDEI and more on AI and bias. We are working on a AI toolkit for unions together, as the world wakes up to the need for collective access to data and accountability. Together we have a mission to made good work essential to AI and tech.’

Andrew Pakes - Director of Communications and Research at Prospect Union

IFOW's research, supported by Trust for London, has shown that autonomy and dignity at work often hinges on access and control over personal data which feeds data-driven technologies used to perform management functions. Our expert Equality Task Force has also identified new challenges to the application and enforcement of UK data protection laws.

Drawing on these insights, we are working with leading technology union Prospect to test the use of data protection laws by individuals and collectives. We have now explored application of the law to three case studies, advised on future pathways and we are supporting the development of a practical 'AI toolkit' for unions and their members. The first chapter of the toolkit has now been published. It offers easy-to-follow guidance on employee consultation and Data Protection Impact Assessments.

This project is part of a mission to help rebalance asymmetries of access, information and power at work by improving the quality of work, judged against IFOW's Good Work Charter. We are proud to have supported Prospect become a national and international union leader in the field of AI and data protection and look forward to developing this project in 2021.

Sign up to our newsletter

We would love to stay in touch.

Our newsletters and updates let you know what we’ve been up to, what’s in the pipeline, and give you the chance to sign up for our events.

You can unsubscribe at anytime by clicking the link at the bottom of our emails or by emailing dataprotection@ifow.org. Read our full privacy policy including how your information will be stored by clicking the link below.