Countering Disinformation with a Meeting of TITAN(s) from Europe’s Research and Innovation Community
Updated: Feb 8
The Titan project held its first face-to-face consortium meeting in November 2022, to forge working relationships and deep-dive into the hard questions around how to best support the public in navigating disinformation online.
Photo: The dynamic TITAN Consortium
Transport strikes and bad weather across much of Europe couldn’t dent the enthusiasm of the TITAN Consortium as researchers, technologists and social scientists gathered in Brussels at VUB and VRT offices for the project’s first to face meeting since the project officially launched in September 2022.
TITAN is a research and innovation project funded by the European Commission designed to help the public in the fight against disinformation and fake news. It leverages AI capabilities, Socratic thinking methodology and decision-making pathways to create a cutting-edge dialogue-based ecosystem – centred around an intelligent chat agent - which supports users in better identifying harmful content and halting the sharing and spread of disinformation.
With the past two months dedicated to formulating virtual delivery teams within the Consortium and detailed planning for work package delivery, the in-person meeting was crucial for moving complex discussions forward around defining the decision-making processes for each of the use cases, how to gauge the ethical and moral values of the users involved, as well as determining what AI methods and data collection techniques will be harnessed to fight disinformation, including legal and ethical considerations.
Discussions on the first day helped to provide a clearer description of what the TITAN system could be, the methodologies to be adopted to engage and include end-users in its co-creation, as well as the alignment of timings between work packages and solution releases.
European Commission Programme Officer for innovation in social media and the STARTS initiative at the DG Connect, Peter Friess, addressed the consortium, “You are part of a new round of projects - AI against disinformation which marks a cornerstone in our thinking. Our hope is that projects like yours mark a different way in tackling disinformation, bringing in innovation, different thinking, AI and ethical issues to go beyond just fact checking news, to truly improve trust in communication and information.”
Photo: TITAN at VRT (Flemish Public Broadcaster)
On day 2 dynamic conversations focused on details of how architectural components, methodologies and use case co-creation processes converge for development of the final TITAN ecosystem. The meeting concluded with a set of actions to be worked on over the next three months including co-creation workshop planning and the need to develop descriptions of the different elements for both the back and front end of the system, along with the pre-conditions for the front-end – what data to be collected, how to do ethical profiling, storage needs, assumptions in the models and much more.
The TITAN journey is just beginning…
For more information on TITAN’s aims and ambitions visit TitanThinking.eu