AI and Its Effects in Focus for NetX

Published: June 2, 2022

The WASP-HS call for NetX is now in full swing. Projects in the humanities and social sciences studying the implications and challenges of AI are in focus.
“It is about networking and collaboration between academia and industry where the Wallenberg sphere has decided to work long-term and build up research that is strategically important for Sweden” says Pernilla Johnsson, Head of Ericsson Research Consumer- and IndustryLab.

Pernilla Jonsson, who sits on the board of WASP-HS, The Wallenberg AI, Autonomous Systems and Software Program – Humanities and Society, believes that the program is a strong initiative to bring important knowledge into companies and that NetX is a further investment in this.

“The social sciences and humanities have an extremely important role to play in understanding what the world will be like when humans, artificial intelligence (AI) and IT come together. We need to understand this both in terms of looking at the immediate aspects and for the society building that lies ahead, in terms of AI for example,” says Pernilla Jonsson.

“We need more theories that can help us understand the new landscape that is emerging and shaping up.”

Different Worlds
It is important to consider the challenges that arise when two different worlds meet.

“Academia and industry need meeting places to be inspired by each other, says Pernilla Jonsson. Research needs business to explore and business needs the objective voice of academia to understand issues in depth and from a different perspective.”

As Head of Ericsson Research Consumer and IndustryLab at Ericsson Research, Pernilla Jonsson has extensive experience of collaboration between academia and industry. She believes that the key is to look beyond quick research results and focus more on sustainability and quality.

“The academic voice should generate applicable knowledge, but it should also focus on the long-term, fundamental and theory-building. You won’t get that if you focus too much on the needs of business ‘right now’,” says Pernilla Jonsson.

NetX stands for Networking Excellence Projects in the Humanities and Social Sciences for the Study of Consequences and Challenges of Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Systems and aims to create a network for excellence projects in the humanities and social sciences, specifically studies on consequences and challenges of AI and autonomous systems.

“It is a completely new call where WASP-HS builds a pool of expertise between researchers at Swedish universities and between researchers and partners from industry,” says Pernilla Jonsson.