International Seminar for National Commissions for UNESCO on the Implementation of the UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence

On 9 February, following the 2nd UNESCO Global Forum on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence (AI), the National Commissions for UNESCO of Germany, Korea and Slovenia hosted a digital seminar on the implementation of the UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of AI. In an informal setting, more than 80 representatives of National Commissions for UNESCO from around the world shared their experiences in implementing the Recommendation at national level.

The Secretary-General of the Slovenian National Commission, Gašper Hrastelj, and the Assistant Director-General for Humanities and Social Sciences at UNESCO, Gabriela Ramos, started by presenting the main outcomes of the Global Forum on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence, which took place in Kranj, Slovenia, on 5 to 6 February 2024. Gabriela Ramos emphasized that major international technology companies also committed themselves to follow the Recommendation in future. She also called for even stronger and closer cooperation between the National Commissions and with the UNESCO Secretariat in the field of AI ethics.

The seminar held immediately after the Global Forum provided an excellent opportunity to do so, and showed that national commissions are already playing an important role in implementing the Recommendation.


The UNESCO Recommendation on The Ethics of AI: Shaping the Future of Our Societies.
National Commissions of Germany, the Netherlands and Slovenia, 2023

Good practice examples from Austria, Rwanda, Bahrain, the Philippines and Colombia

The seminar was structured around five presentations from National Commissions for UNESCO describing their practical experiences in implementing the AI Recommendation at national level.

Christine Maaß from the Austrian Commission for UNESCO presented the approach of an interdisciplinary Advisory Board composed of experts. She emphasized that, in addition to the expertise of its members, the heterogeneity of the perspectives represented and its diverse composition are particularly important factors for the success of the Advisory Board.

Dominique Mvunabandi from the Rwanda National Commission reported on the organisation of a workshop for Rwandan key stakeholders from the public and private sectors. The aim was to raise awareness of the contents of the AI Recommendation and to discuss the possibilities for its implementation in Rwanda. Among other things, the workshop highlighted the need for investment in national AI research in order to enable more effective implementation of the Recommendation.

Mubarak Buti, Secretary General of the Bahrain National Commission for UNESCO, reported on the Commission’s educational policy approach to develop and communicate specific AI ethics guidelines based on the Recommendation for teachers, students and pupils. The aim is to set up training programmes for all educational stakeholders and to embed ethical aspects of AI in the education sector.

Rex A. Ubac from the UNESCO National Commission of the Philippines presented the preparations for the Readiness Assessment, which evaluates the extent to which a country is already prepared to implement AI ethically and responsible for all their citizens. To ensure that all relevant perspectives are included, a wide range of stakeholders is involved in the preparatory events, e.g. in round table discussions with national AI stakeholders.

Gabriel Ariza Cera from the Colombian National Commission presented the country's AI strategy and explained how the AI Recommendation has already been integrated into national strategies and policies.

Based on the five examples of good practice, the participants engaged in dialogue with each other and with the speakers and shared their own experiences.


In November 2021, the 193 UNESCO member states adopted the first globally applicable international legal text on the ethical development and use of AI: the UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence. The text provides a clear ethical framework for both current and future application of AI in eleven policy areas, including education, culture, communication, work and health.


UNESCO Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence. Conditions for the Implementation in Germany.
German Commission for UNESCO, 2022