Chapter 3: AI in the public sector: fundamental operational questions and how to address them
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The use of advanced data-driven technologies is increasingly pervasive across public sectors globally. Of particular interest to practitioners and scholars is the use of algorithmic or machine learning technology in the performance of not just automated tasks, but also of actions that require decisions and have social significance. However, important questions arise which are essential to ensuring safe and effective usage of AI within government, not least as the core concerns of the public sector include fairness, impartiality, and accountability. In this contribution, the growing use of AI in three policy domains which involve high levels of direct human engagement with public services and public servants - public health, policing, and immigration - is considered. Drawing on practice-based findings, recent developments in each case are thematically examined before some of the challenges arising are considered. In a concluding section some recommendations for addressing these challenges are presented.

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