On November 18th Assoc. Prof. Iraklis Varlamis, collaborator of Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH) in sustAGE Project participated as a panelist in the Digital Health Society Virtual Summit. In the panel with the topic “Benefits and risks of AI for health and wellbeing in the workplace”, which was promoted by the SmartWork EU project he presented the main concept of sustAGE.

The panel was moderated by Karolina Mackiewicz, Senior International Project Manager at ECHAlliance, and comprised:

  • Cornelia Kutterer, Senior Director, Rule of Law & Responsible Tech, European Government Affairs, from Microsoft,
  • Isabelle de Zegher, MD, MS, Founder of b!loba, Member of the Management Board SNOMED International, Lead MyData-4-Pandemics thematic group
  • Charalampos Vassiliou, Digital Strategy and Business Development Consultant at Byte Computer S.A., Project Manager of SmartWork project, and
  • Giulio Jacucci, Professor at the University of Helsinki and co-ordinator of the CO-ADAPT project.

He discussed with other panelists the main risks for the acceptance of AI and IoT solutions that aim in promoting occupational safety and well-being with an emphasis on data sharing and privacy exposure and the need to build end-users’ trust. As explained in the panel, applications and platforms must explain how user data are employed and for what purpose, and provide meaningful and helpful results to each individual user. Prof. Varlamis clarified that sustAGE contributes in this direction by providing personalized recommendations to each individual worker and only group-related recommendations to shift managers in order to maintain workers’ privacy. With the use of timely addressed recommendations, it strengthens users’ trust in the application output. Legal, regulatory, organizational, and financial risks have also been discussed and a call for action in these fields has been raised in order to increase user trust.

In terms of the benefits, all panelists agreed that AI solutions are beneficial for workers of all ages, especially for the elderly, providing holistic solutions both for the work and home environment. They improve wellbeing through better lifestyle, improve safety and support behavioral change towards healthier habits, and provide personalized intelligent task support at work. They help on the scalability of interventions (e.g. at a national healthcare system level) and provide consistent quality and reliability.