A new common culture for the innovation of public services

Artificial Intelligence will redesign our lives. Our daily lives of human beings, citizens, workers, parents, and children are changing before everyone’s eyes. Indeed, we can be sure that our customs will soon be reshaped consequently generating social changes that require an individual and collective reflection and in some cases, perhaps, even an upset reflection.

Technology is neutral in itself but it is not so in its application and it is even less neutral for those who, working on the development of societies, often find themselves deciding what is right or wrong or, in a given context, what is the best good or the least harm. The spirit with which the Agency for Digital Italy has undertaken this commitment is summarized in these few lines.

The aim of the pages that will follow the preface of this White Paper is the study, analysis, and the understanding of the opportunities and risks generated by the dissemination of Artificial Intelligence technologies in the public sector: hence, the definition of a shared perimeter within which to face all the challenges that this brings. This document marks the beginning of a journey that the Italian Public Administration has already started: in recent months, we have created a community with which we have worked to draw the working lines that could help us define the approach to Artificial Intelligence in Public Administration that we will undertake to transform into the operational steps as of today.

However, it is at the end of this first phase of study, analysis, and comparison that I am further confident that, never as in this case, a platform that connects the public administration to the markets was extremely needed to have a frame value. Having clear ideas on the model of technological development and with a vision capable of contrasting the apocalyptic, exclusionary and non-governed scenarios.

A reflection that, in addition to being the leitmotif of the White Paper, moves from the clear awareness that public administration needs - for the sake of its decisions - to be competitive on these issues, without hiding. Today, more than ever, those who understand and govern the phenomena that surround it continue in the path of innovation; those who are affected will lose ground.

This is why the work just begun becomes a prerequisite to face the use of frontier technologies that allow the administration to capitalize on the innovation introduced by the infrastructural projects already underway and, starting from them, allows organizing the model of development of its future projects.

The recommendations published in this document are aimed to become design criteria for new services and methodological assets to guide the creation and development of pilot projects. In addition, the recommendation will also serve for the innovative result of the technologies that will be implemented and for the common value approach. Only by following this path we will succeed in relating the benefits of Artificial Intelligence in the daily “practice” of citizens.

Antonio Samaritani

Director General of the Agency for Digital Italy