Gry Hasselbalch is an author and scholar of data technology, society, ethics and power.
She is co-founder and Research Director of the European thinkdotank DataEthics that has challenged the uneven power of data and provided constructive knowledge and collaboration since 2015. She furthermore founded and is leading the Data Pollution & Power Initiative at the University of Bonn’s Institute of Science and Ethics’ Sustainable AI Lab.
Her influential book Data Ethics- The New Competitive Advantage published in 2016 in Danish and English and co-authored with Danish journalist Pernille Tranberg was the first book to use the term data ethics defining it as a response to the social and ethical implications of big data business models and practices. Gry’s latest critically acclaimed book Data Ethics of Power – A Human Approach in the Big Data and AI Era was published with Edward Elgar Publishing in December 2021. It provides an innovative ethical framework for studying and governing Big Data and Artificial Intelligence with a focus on power dynamics.
Gry was a member of the EU High Level Expert Group on AI that developed EU’s AI ethics guidelines, coined the term “Trustworthy AI” and contributed directly to the EU’s AI strategy. Today she is the Senior Key Expert on AI Ethics in the European Commission’s international outreach for a human-centric approach to artificial intelligence (InTouch.AI.eu) project that aims to support the Commission in setting up a global framework for ethics and trust.
Often invited for key notes, panel debates and presentations at venues worldwide to a variety of audiences – from industry leaders, policymakers to academics – she speaks about the ethics, power dynamics and interests of big data and AI.
Gry holds a PhD. in data ethics and power from the University of Copenhagen.
Gry was a member of the European Commission’s High-Level Expert group on AI that developed the ethics guidelines , ethics assessment list and policy recommendations for the development of AI in Europe. The recommendations from the group are included in the European Commission‘s five-year plan, and will be part of the Multiannual Financial Framework up until 2027.
She is the Senior Key Expert on AI Ethics of the European Commission’s International Outreach for a Human-Centric Approach to Artificial Intelligence (InTouchAI.eu) project that aims to support the Commission in setting up a global framework for ethics and trust to enable the growth of AI.
In addition, she was a long time committee member of the IEEE’s Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in the Design of Autonomous Systems .
Gry is also leading the Data Pollution & Power Initiative at the University of Bonn’s Institute of Science and Ethics’ AI Lab.
Gry is one of the founders of the thinkdotank DataEthics. and has for years worked to include data ethics in policy making and business development. She was one of the 12 members of the first data ethics expert committee established to create recommendations for the Danish government. Gry also created the ‘Privacy as Innovation’– series of sessions, background papers and network at the UN Internet Governance Forum that brought together civil society, governmental and industry stakeholders.
Gry is regularly invited as an ethics reviewer for the European Research Council and the Horizon2020 on major EC funded projects concerning emerging technologies, robotics and AI.
She is furthermore member of Bayer’s independent external Bioethics Council.
Talks and press
Gry speaks at venues worldwide. See for example this Mozilla Talk (Paris), this keynote on data ethics as a competitive advantage (Copenhagen), this CPDP debate on ethical data handling (Brussels), this UN Internet Governance Forum on ethics and IoT(Brazil) This UNESCO Inclusive Policy Lab Podcast on data and power.
She has on several occasions been invited to speak at international agenda setting policy fora such as the German Marshall fund’s Brussels Forum 2019 and the Club of Three’s plenary meeting 2019. Gry is often called upon by media as an expert (see e.g. Al Jazeera1, AlJazeera2, Tech for Good Life podcast).
Gry’s latest critically acclaimed book Data Ethics of Power – The Human Approach in the Big Data and AI Era provides a human-centric ethical framework for studying and governing Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and their power dynamics.
The influential book Data Ethics – The New Competitive Advantage that she wrote together with Pernille Tranberg and published in 2016 was one of the early books to describe the social and ethical implications of big data picturing the emerging movement of the mid 2010s to take back control of our data from powerful big tech Silicon Valley actors. Its crucial contribution was its constructive approach that sought out the alternative engineering and company practices and initiatives that were countering the established big tech surveillance and “tracking by default” practices.
online Youth empowerment, protection and digital skills
Gry was a driving force in the field of youth online protection, empowerment and digital education working for 10 years in the Danish Media Council where she established the national EU Safer Internet Centre co-funded by the European Commission. As a key component in the pan European network of the national centres in 30 EU countries Insafe, she acted in policy settings as national and European representative, but also worked on the ground teaching youth, parents and educators digital skills and basic technology awareness.