Our policy and advocacy grants run for two years. They are flexible and we trust our grantees to use the resources we offer in the way they think will best achieve the change they want to see. We also know that organisations need more than just money. So as well as financial support we ask organisations what help they want to build connections, gain the skills and knowledge they need and work collaboratively to drive change.

We have also funded organisations to explore the use of AI in response to the Covid pandemic. You can read about their findings here.

How to apply for funding from the European AI & Society Fund

We are accepting applications for the Global Fellowship Programme on AI & Market Power. The Programme will support investigative research and critical analysis into the political economy of large-scale AI systems and aims to sharpen our collective understanding of market concentration in the AI ecosystem. Fellows can apply for up to $70,000 and the deadline for applications is 8 July 2024. 

 

 

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Our grantees

Since being set up in 2020, we have supported almost 40 organisations that are working to shape Artificial Intelligence to better serve people and society.

Our grantees have helped put fundamental rights and democratic freedoms at the heart of policymaking on AI, and have brought the perspectives of marginalised communities such as migrants and sex workers into the debate.

 

Access now
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€242.989
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€242.989

Access Now defends and extends the digital rights of users at risk around the world. By combining direct technical support, comprehensive policy engagement, global advocacy, grassroots grant making, legal interventions and convenings such as RightsCon, Access Now fights for human rights in the digital age. Their Brussels team has promoted the organisation’s programmatic goals in the European context on issues such as AI and data protection by advancing legislative processes, empowering users and holding the private sector accountable.

With the support of the European AI Fund, Access Now has exerted significant influence on discussion around the regulation of AI in the EU and beyond. Building on their joint civil society statement in November 2021, “An EU Artificial Intelligence Act for Fundamental Rights”, Access Now has worked in close coalition with other civil society organisations to tackle the work issue by issue. They’ve engaged in behind-the-scenes advocacy, and in the European Parliament, Access Now has seen success across the board, with all of their amendments being tabled – in many cases by one or both of the co-rapporteurs in the IMCO-LIBE committees, as well as MEPs across most political groups. One of their most significant achievements has been to mainstream the debate about prohibitions in the AI Act, which they achieved by working in coalition with a variety of other civil society organisations.

Ada Lovelace Institute
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€88.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€88.000

The Ada Lovelace Institute works to create a shared vision of a world where AI and data are mobilised for good, to ensure that technology improves people’s lives. Its 2021-2024 Strategy lays out six strategic goals, one of which is to “rebalance power over data and AI”. The Ada Lovelace Institute commits to developing, testing and proposing practical, regulatory and legal accountability mechanisms to rebalance power in data and AI systems. Europe is leading the world in approaches to data and AI regulation that foreground fundamental rights and societal benefits. The coming years will see ongoing conversation on implementation of the DSA, the DMA, and the Data Governance Act, as well as debates about the Draft AI Act and the Draft Data Act, and a new proposal on AI liability. There remains much work to be done to ensure that AI and data regulation empowers people and creates a regulatory and economic ecosystem that justly and equitably delivers the benefits of new technologies while minimising risks and harms. Using their three interlinked approaches to shaping regulation – building evidence, convening diverse voices, and shaping policy and practice – over the next two years the Ada Lovelace Institute will pursue the following objectives: 1) Ensure that public and political debates on the AI Liability Directive and AI Act (“the AI Framework”) and other relevant laws are well informed by interdisciplinary research into their implications and impact on people and society; 2) Support the effective implementation of the AI Framework through participation in and shaping of standard development mechanisms to ensure technical standards embed fundamental rights; and 3) Develop and advocate for audit, impact assessment and evaluation methodologies that can be used to ensure the effective implementation of regulation.

Ada Lovelace Institute
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2022
€45.000
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2022
€45.000

The Ada Lovelace Institute researched the ethical, societal and human rights arguments around vaccination certificates and immunity passports and proposed a six-point roadmap for “a vaccine passport system that delivers societal benefit”. They advocated for a pause on the roll-out of initiatives until an evidence based, publicly debated, ethical and sustainable approach to vaccine certification could be established that would not further exacerbate the disproportionate impact of the crisis on the most vulnerable.

Algorithm Audit
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€79.700
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€79.700

Algorithm Audit is using a case-based approach to build and share public knowledge about ethical algorithms. The NGO forms independent audit commissions for advising on ethical issues emerging in concrete algorithmic practices, tests technical tools to detect and mitigate bias in practice, and conducts advocacy work by connecting international professionals and sharing knowledge with society and policy makers. Algorithm Audit enables the normative capabilities of humans to work in tandem with the scalable capacity of statistics to define fair AI on a case-by-case basis.

AlgorithmWatch
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€293.338,25
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€293.338,25

AlgorithmWatch is the leading civil society organisation in the field of social impact of automated decision-making (ADM) and AI-based systems. The mission of AlgorithmWatch is to protect peoples’ rights and strengthen the common good in the face of increased use of algorithmic systems. This is done by analysing effects of ADM / AI-based processes on human behaviour, pointing out ethical conflicts and explaining the characteristics and effects of these complex processes to a general public. To maximise the benefits of ADM / AI for society, AlgorithmWatch builds coalitions with different communities and disciplines, as well as co-develops ideas and strategies to achieve the responsible and benevolent use of ADM / AI-based systems – with a mix of technologies, regulation, and suitable oversight institutions.

AlgorithmWatch has established and deepened relations to other important stakeholders, first and foremost the CSOs of the AI core group, but also politicians, high-level administration officials and other CSOs. In their advocacy efforts, they are pushing for a EU-wide ban on biometric recognition technology that enables mass surveillance. They have jointly produced a civil society joint statement “An EU Artificial Intelligence Act for Fundamental Rights” which was signed by 123 organizations. This statement has been the foundation of their advocacy work since then. For a long time, AlgorithmWatch was the only NGO in Germany focusing on the AI Act and provided crucial insights regarding the German position.

AlgorithmWatch
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€44,825
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€44,825

AlgorithmWatch’s Tracing the Tracers project created a digital platform to continuously monitor and analyse automated decision-making (ADM) systems used in response to the Covid-19 pandemic in Europe and beyond. They highlighted the multitude of devices, tools and solutions tested and adopted despite an absence of evidence of their effectiveness, and often with insufficient democratic debate.

ANEC - European Consumer Voice in Standardisation
Apr 2021 -
Jul 2024
€156.772,80
Apr 2021 -
Jul 2024
€156.772,80

ANEC is the European consumer voice in standardisation. As one of only three EU-appointed not for profit organisations able to directly intervene in standardisation processes, ANEC represents the consumer interest of all Europeans in the creation and application of technical standards, market surveillance and enforcement, accreditation, and conformity assessment schemes. ANEC works with European Standardisation bodies CEN-CENELEC and ETSI to directly shape the standards that will underpin key European laws and public policies for consumers.

By engaging a consumer AI expert, ANEC has influenced the AI standardisation process both at the technical and policy levels. In addition to successes in CEN-CENELEC JTC 21 on AI, WG 1 Strategic Advisory Group and WG4  on AI Trustworthiness, they have recently secured the inclusion of an ANEC-provided diagram of the consumer product lifecycle into the submitted new work item proposal on AI Trustworthiness. The diagram shows the known additional detail needed beyond the existing AI international standards (ISO-IEC JTC1 SC42) for a consumer products lifecycle using AI. The work of WG4 promises to be fruitful in highlighting what we need for consumer trustworthiness in AI. ANEC is currently mapping out trustworthiness ‘observables’ throughout a product lifecycle. ANEC was also able to influence the content of the draft EC Standardization Request on Artificial Intelligence in terms of inclusiveness of the standardisation process. Their other stand of their work is about raising awareness and capacity building on standardisation at large. ANEC successfully held capacity building webinars for ANEC staff and civil society experts, providing an introduction to how AI-enabled technology works and its impact on a wide range of consumer products and services and what to consider when building advocacy positions and the role of standards.

Balkan Investigate Reporting Network (BIRN)
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€44.994
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€44.994

The Balkan Investigate Reporting Network (BIRN) supported ten reporters through its Digital Rights Programme for Journalists, established a Covid-19 Crisis Tech Response live feed to highlight digital abuses and published a comprehensive report on digital rights in the region, with a particular focus on the rise of far right and hate speech online and content removal.

Centre for Democracy & Technology (CDT Europe)
Nov 2022 -
Oct 2023
€40.000
Nov 2022 -
Oct 2023
€40.000

CDT Europe advocates for the promotion and protection of democracy and human rights in European tech law and policy. They work to increase equality and amplify voices in
European-level law and policy debates. CDT champions policies, laws, and technical designs that protect against invasive, discriminatory, and exploitative uses of new technologies. In their work, CDT advocates for online platforms to be more transparent, accountable, and respectful of human rights, as well as for curtailing government censorship and enabling all people to access and share information of their choosing without harassment or undue interference.

The aim of their project is to facilitate a dialogue between civil society and decision makers at a very crucial stage of negotiations in the EU AI Act. Within the project series of inter-institutional discussions and a technical exchange between civil society and relevant institutional experts within the EU and Member State bodies will take place. One of the key outcomes will be recommendations informed by CDT’s in-depth technical expertise and deepened civil society coordination in their response to the AI legislation.

Civil Liberties Union for Europe (Liberties)
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€43.110
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€43.110

The Civil Liberties Union for Europe (Liberties) conducted comprehensive research on how different European contact tracing apps work, what kind of data they collect and process, how efficient these apps are, how transparently they operate, and how the apps can worsen existing social problems.

Danes je nov dan (Today is a new day)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€107.200
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€107.200

Danes je nov dan (Today is a new day) is a Slovenian NGO that uses digital technology and the internet to create dialogue on public issues, facilitate participation and push for transparency. Their mission is to promote open data, responsible use of technology and participatory decision-making processes.

With its prolific AI/ADM research programmes, new UNESCO-backed International Research Centre on Artificial Intelligence, and the forthcoming implementation of the National Programme for the Promotion of Development and Use of Artificial Intelligence, Slovenia is experiencing a wave of excitement around AI. But the majority of discussions focus on the perspectives of researchers, engineers and politicians, to the exclusion of “non-technical” views. Anticipating the rollout of the first significant use cases of AI/ADM in the public sector which will set the ethical and legal foundation for future use, civil society must organise and devote substantial resources to this topic or risk being left at the margins of the debate.

To disrupt this worrying trend, Danes je nov dan will empower a diverse coalition of NGOs to become a key stakeholder in debates regarding the future of AI in Slovenia. Enhancing the technical expertise and coordination of these NGOs will bring more transparency and accountability to the use of AI/ADM in the public sector. This will be accomplished by responding to standard setting, the application of reference projects and the use of AI/ADM for various activities through a range of channels including soft law, awareness-building, media and public pressure in order to address specific cases with advocacy and strategic litigation among other approaches.

EDRi
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€284.000
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€284.000

The European Digital Rights (EDRi) network is a dynamic and resilient collective of civil rights organisations, experts, advocates and academics based across 19 countries, working to defend and advance digital rights and freedoms. Its mission is to challenge private and state actors who abuse their power to control or manipulate the public. EDRi does this by advocating for robust laws and their enforcement, informing and mobilising people, promoting a healthy, accountable technology market and building a movement of organisations and individuals committed to digital rights and freedoms in a connected world.

The support of the European AI Fund contributed to sustaining the work of EDRi Policy colleagues leading on AI Act advocacy, as well as supporting coalition-building and network coordination by providing the necessary core support for other teams. Due to the funding extension, EDRi could offer direct financial support to the work of EDRi members and partners active in the EU AIA coalition. Finally, the Fund’s support meant EDRi could dedicate resources to expanding the knowledge base on AI and bias through commissioning research. EDRi’s advocacy efforts push for a fundamental rights-based approach to AI regulation, ensuring all people are protected from harmful AI use. Their work methods include direct advocacy to EU institutions and governments, campaigning and public awareness and, importantly, coordinating civil society organisations to channel advocacy on the AI Act around fundamental rights issues. EDRI’s work has had a great impact on the European Parliament’s position with regards to the AI Act.

 

Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice
Oct 2023 -
Dec 2024
€30.000
Oct 2023 -
Dec 2024
€30.000

Equinox Initiative for Racial Justice is a people of colour-led initiative working to advance rights and justice for all people in Europe. They address racism at the EU level by ensuring that racialized people are at the centre of decision-making on policy and legislation in the EU.  

The Ecosystem grant supports Equinox in organising a civil society convening at the intersection of digital, racial, and migrant justice, forging connections between activism across Europe. It also supports Equinox in building its own capacity and that of other racial justice organisations to engage in legislative proposals and advocate for a positive vision of re-distribution of resources away from discriminatory and surveillant technologiesEquinox builds knowledge to counter digital surveillance in a way that is rooted in racial justice by centring modes of resistance and working towards systems of care that meet the needs of racialised people. 

European Network Against Racism
Apr 2021 -
Mar 2024
€120.000
Apr 2021 -
Mar 2024
€120.000

ENAR is a 150+ member, pan-European anti-racism network combining advocacy for racial equality and facilitating cooperation among civil society anti-racism actors in Europe. It was set up in 1998 by grassroots activists to achieve legal and policy changes at European level and drive progress towards racial equality in all EU Member States. ENAR works to bring to an end to structural racism and discrimination, strengthen the sense of safety and security for racialised people, and to strengthen the resilience and solidarity of the network and the wider anti-racism movement across Europe. ENAR strives to create safe spaces for racialised people and CSOs and amplify the antiracism voice in Europe.

Due to delays in recruitment, the work under this project was postponed and got under way in September 2022, with the appointment of a new Policy and Advocacy Advisor.

Eticas Foundation
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€247.196
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€247.196

Support from the AI fund will allow Eticas to consolidate, increase and make more visible its policy and advocacy efforts, including its initiatives with civil society organisations and work at the policy level in Spain and the EU. Specifically, it plans to focus on disseminating its work and experience on algorithmic audits (both internal and external), algorithmic leaflets, algorithmic registries, AI scores and certification mechanisms. These tools draw on historical examples of how society has negotiated complex technical innovations with significant social impacts, while also incorporating Eticas’ experience in translating abstract commitments to fairness, transparency and accountability into technical specifications that can be embedded in product design and development. Eticas will enlarge the team and go beyond individual projects and initiatives to implement a strategic communications and impact strategy.

EuroMed Rights
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€120.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€120.000

The field of migration and asylum is being shaped by a security focus, with a growing interest in developing new technologies to manage migration flows and process asylum procedures. The EU, Frontex and some Member States are exploring the use of AI to manage external borders by predicting migration flows through the software ITFLOWS and automatically process asylum procedures (for example, by using AI to assess the credibility of asylum claims, enable face recognition, and attempt to identify the country of origin of Arab-speaking asylum seekers). However, there is very little transparency in the data used to train and deploy these technologies. What kind of data is collected, analysed and used to train AI asylum systems? Who develops and manages this data? What information may be ignored when creating harmonised and standardised procedures? And above all, what human rights violations could take place? EuroMed Rights will explore these questions by conducting research, advocacy, capacity building and outreach activities. With a network of 70 civil society organisations in 30 countries in the Euro-Mediterranean region, the geographical focus will be on the EU, on Member States at external borders, and countries on the southern shore of the Mediterranean. The work will focus on two main themes: the use of AI in asylum procedures and the use of AI in monitoring migration flows. The main objectives are to increase transparency on the actors who develop and manage AI technologies for border management and the kind of data collected, ensure policies regulating the use of AI technologies in border management are based on human rights, increase accountability on the EU budget used on AI technologies for migration and asylum. The overall aim is to increase the capacity of EuroMed Rights and its members in the field, and make the public more aware of the issues at stake.

 

 

European Council of Autistic People (EUCAP)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€42.600
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€42.600

The European Council of Autistic People (EUCAP) aims to build the capacity of autistic-led organisations in Europe to advocate for the rights of autistic people in all matters concerning AI. It will conduct a literature review, consultations and a multi-lingual survey to map existing AI research and technology that targets autism and better understand what kinds of application are beneficial and acceptable to autistic people. This knowledge will be used to inform autistic communities in Europe and train key volunteers within EUCAP’s member organisations, providing them with the means to engage effectively with policymakers, legislators, researchers and industry representatives to convey the needs and wishes of autistic people. Increasing the direct involvement of autistic people in research and development, in a spirit of co-production, can bring benefits beyond just serving their specific needs. EUCAP will engage in networking and seek opportunities for partnerships beyond this two-year project to bring more of the positive potential and strengths of autistic people into the field of AI.

European Disability Forum (EDF)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€185.600
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€185.600

With this project, the European Disability Forum (EDF) wants to make sure that European and national legislation regarding AI systems (including providers and users) include accessibility requirements and protect people with disabilities from discrimination and the violation of their rights. EDF will do this through multidimensional advocacy work at both the European and national levels. At the European level, EDF aims to build and strengthen the partnership between organisations working on the proposed AI Act (for example, EDRi, Global Disability Innovation Hub, Ethical AI Alliance, EurAI and Equinet). Complementing this will be EDF’s advocacy work at the European Parliament, the Council of the European Union and the European Commission as well as relevant ministries in Member States and European and national standards organisations. EDF recognises the importance of being involved in standardisation processes by liaising with the ANEC (the European consumer voice in standardisation) and involvement in the development of European standards in support of the AI Act. This cannot be successful without building the disability movement’s knowledge of and capacity in AI, so a large part of the planned activities will be devoted to empowering EDF members in understanding AI, its risks and opportunities, and equipping them with the tools to advocate for ethical AI at the national level. The final part of the planned work will be to raise public awareness of ethical AI by creating a European and national campaign.

European Patients' Forum
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€202.500
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€202.500

The European Patients’ Forum (EPF) is one of the most prominent civil society organisations active in health policy at European level, representing the collective voice of the estimated 150 million patients living with various chronic diseases throughout Europe. EPF is an umbrella organisation of patient organisations across the EU and a driving force to advance patient empowerment and involvement in EU health policy debates, aiming to ensure equitable access to high-level, patient-centred care for all patients in Europe. Founded in 2003 and based in Brussels, EPF engages in policy advocacy and campaigning, and participates in EU-funded projects, organising educational and policy events, and capacity-building initiatives.

The support from the European AI Fund has helped EPF inform and empower the Secretariat and EPF members on AI in healthcare, putting them on a better footing to enact change in healthcare policy. They hosted a parallel session on AI at their Congress in June 2022, presenting EPF’s view on AI in healthcare to policy makers and stakeholders, and included an expert led ‘serious game’, designed to help delegates be aware of real-life scenarios and decide for or against the use of AI solutions for patients at each step. Overall, the AI Fund’s support has created a knowledge core within the EPF team on AI, as well as a valuable network of contacts amongst the academic and expert community, gaining more visibility with stakeholders on the topic, including participation in the European Commission’s regular E-Health Stakeholder Group meetings, and various speaking invitations. The work that they achieved so far provides a strong foundation for their patient community towards achieving patient centric AI in healthcare, as the patient voice has been more present and visible on the topic and our community benefits from the capacity building to enact effect change at national level and have a robust voice in identifying the levels of risk in AI in healthcare.

European Sex Workers' Rights Alliance (ESWA)
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€206.666
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€206.666

The European Sex Workers’ Rights Alliance is a regional network of more than 100 organisations providing services to sex workers and advocating for sex workers’ rights in Europe and Central Asia. ESWA is sex worker-led and aim to challenge repressive laws and policies that impact sex workers’ human rights in particular in regard to the access to health and justice.

Support from the European AI Fund has been used to kick-start its programme on the Digital Rights of Sex Workers. Digitalisation and the consequent impact of the new technologies have changed sex work and brought up new threats that ESWA has been working on identifying and building strategies to counter them.  With the AI Fund’s support, ESWA has  organised capacity/movement building meetups, as well as a members’ Congress, bringing 200+ sex workers and allies from 20 countries in Europe and Central Asia which featured 27 workshops, a public conference and an event at the European Parliament over 4 days in October 2022. They have also conducted advocacy and alliance building activities, and published two community reports, and built new and ongoing partnerships and collaborations with other human rights organisations working on digital rights issues. ESWA has also worked extensively on EU policy developments such as the EU AI Act, DSA, Europol and CSAM regulation.

Fair Trials Europe (FTE)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€144.933
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€144.933

Fair Trials Europe (FTE) ensures that European legislation on AI (whether EU, Council of Europe or national level) contains strong safeguards, including prohibitions on the most harmful types of AI applications in policing and the criminal justice systems. FTE’s goal is that these safeguards are enforced at the national level and that, going forward, the public, civil society and those who are most impacted are vigilant of advances in this technology and able to challenge actual or potentially harmful uses. The grant from the European AI Fund will support FTE’s work to: 1) Develop policy recommendations from the ground up via dialogue with affected people that builds on FTE’s evidence-base to regulate the uses of AI in policing and criminal justice systems; 2) Mobilise policymakers to regulate AI systems in policing and criminal justice; and 3) Mobilise affected people, civil society and the public to enforce accountability in the uses of AI in policing and criminal justice.

Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organisations (FEMYSO)
Nov 2023 -
Dec 2024
€30.000
Nov 2023 -
Dec 2024
€30.000

The Forum of European Muslim Youth and Student Organisations (FEMYSO) is a pan-European network, with a mission to empower Muslim youth and build a diverse, cohesive and vibrant Europe. They use their voice to represent the rights and civil liberties of young Muslims in policymaking 

The Ecosystem grant supports research, capacity building and advocacy around cases of anti-Muslim bias in algorithmic systems. FEMYSO will develop a database and report compiling case studies of AI and Islamophobia in Europe, that will be a useful knowledge-building and advocacy resource for the community.  

FEMYSO will also organise a series of regional trainings across Europe to build the capacity of young Muslim communities and youth organisations to lead on advocacy on safer AI. This will bring Muslims as a group that is affected by deployment of discriminatory AI closer to the development of tech policies.  

Foxglove
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€200.706,30
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€200.706,30

Foxglove is a UK-based non-profit that works to build a world where the use of technology is fair for everyone. When the powerful misuse technology to oppress or exclude, Foxglove investigates, litigates and campaigns to fix it. Support from the European AI Fund helped Foxglove reach new allies within the Amazon warehouses during a summer of protests, get their stories into the press and launch solidarity campaigns, highlighting the injustice of Amazon’s risible 35p pay offer during the cost-of-living crisis. Foxglove have also been supporting Amazon workers in Germany to work up test case legal challenges. The first case will challenge the algorithmic micromanagement of Amazon workers, which harms their physical health and results in them peeing in bottles. Foxglove also worked with Organise to launch an open letter signed by more than 200 workers to raise concerns about the harm that Prime Day does to workers.

When Time Magazine ran a front page exposé on Facebook’s moderation hub for East Africa, Foxglove were able to act on behalf of whistle-blower Daniel Motaung, a brave content moderator who lost his job for organising his colleagues to stand up to worker oppression. Foxglove selected a Kenyan counsel and filed a world-first constitutional challenge in the Kenyan courts on Daniel’s behalf, challenging Facebook and their outsourcing company Sama for forced labour, human-trafficking and union-busting. In response, Facebook tried to silence them, threatening Daniel and Foxglove with criminal contempt, which they successfully resisted with the help of an EU-led coalition of 80 groups (their allies, People vs Big Tech). The case in Kenya is a world first and could force change for content moderators around the globe, including thousands of workers in Europe. In addition, the AI Fund’s grant enabled Foxglove to support the Greater Manchester Coalition of Disabled People to challenge the UK’s Department of Work and Pension’s use of a secretive algorithm which unfairly flags disabled people for benefits fraud. Foxglove continue to collaborate with and learn from other groups in Europe bringing similar cases and challenging similar algorithms.

 

 

Friends of the Earth Europe
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€175.000
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€175.000

Friends of the Earth Europe (FOEE) is the largest grassroots environmental network in Europe, uniting more than 30 national organisations. FOEE work towards environmental, social, economic and political justice, equal access to resources and opportunities on the local, national, regional and international levels, and seek to increase public participation and democratic decision-making.

FIAN international is a pioneering human rights organisation in the field of economic and social rights. FIAN supports affected communities in their struggles for food and dignity. FIAN has consultative status with the UN and national sections of six European countries.

The Centre for Agroecology, Water and Resilience at Coventry University (CAWR) is a research centre with vast experience in scientific and policy research on sustainable food systems and the development of transdisciplinary methodologies and deliberative democratic processes for agriculture and food knowledges.

The support from the European AI Fund has enabled the coalition of FOEE, FIAN International and CAWR to kickstart exchanges on AI/ADM among organisations active in the food movement in Europe. With a few noticeable exceptions, the debate on digital farming focuses mainly on the potential benefits of how AI could improve the economic and environmental performance of agriculture. Few civil society organisations have raised concerns about how digitalisation can lead to greater corporate control and reduce farmers’ autonomy. Through interviews, a series of informal online meetings and well-attended structured workshops (including a public-facing workshop with over a hundred participants at the UN Food Systems (UNFSS) counter summit), the coalition was able to facilitate knowledge exchange and relationship building with actors working on agri-food, and technology and digitalisation experts such as the Institute for Technology in the Public Interest. These activities have clarified that European legislation, including the DSA, DMA and AI Act, will impact the farming sector even though they did not set specific rules for the farming sector. If AI regulation is shaped without listening to the voices of marginalised groups such as small-scale food producers, it risks further cementing inequalities and discrimination that are already damaging food systems and ecosystems at large.

 

 

Fundación Ciudadana Civio
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€60.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€60.000

Inside public administrations, a growing number of technical barriers, cumbersome or openly hostile application processes, and opaque algorithms are having a dramatic impact on welfare services, effectively cutting support for those who most need it, while allowing responsibility to be evaded due to decisions being attributed to “the algorithm”. Three years ago, Civio started developing technical, organisational and legal capabilities to assess and control the increasing use of AI/ADM systems by Spanish public bodies. Civio did so while exposing the risks and flaws of one such system, BOSCO, which validates electricity subsidies applications. With the European AI Fund’s grant, Civio will continue developing these skills in a structured and strategic manner, as opposed to their current best-efforts basis. Funding will enable Civio to monitor these issues consistently, detecting and reacting to government decisions as they happen – this at a critical time when EU regulation is being transposed and adapted into policies and strategies at the national level, and when civil society advocacy is needed to counteract the influence of big tech and hype. Funding will also support campaigning and outreach around their ongoing strategic litigation, and potentially additional cases, exposing flawed governmental arguments against transparency (for example, national security, copyright). Finally, through investigative journalism, Civio will make the impact and consequences of AI visible to people, identify and empower affected communities, and hold decision makers to account.

 

Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte (GFF)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€132.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€132.000

Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte e.V. (GFF) promotes democracy and civil society, protects against disproportionate surveillance, and advocates for equal rights and social participation for everyone. Its strategic litigation efforts concern the use of ADM systems by state and private actors (for example, in immigration processes or online content moderation). With the help of the European AI Fund, GFF will strengthen its efforts to complement its litigation with advocacy work at a pivotal time in EU platform regulation. With the entry into force of the DSA, users of online platforms will gain unprecedented new means of enforcing their fundamental rights against platforms’ increasingly automated content moderation processes. Whether those instruments will lead to a tangible increase in platform accountability will depend on the nature of their enforcement. Germany, as the largest Member State, will play a central role in DSA enforcement and other platform regulation. In 2023/2024, the current German centre-left government will embark on most of its legislative projects, including collective redress. It will also appoint a regulatory body to take on the role of DS Coordinator. The German position in the EU Council on the chat control proposal – a new form of preventive mass surveillance – is decisive on the use of error-prone AI filters as an obligation for online communications services, exposing millions of users to privacy invasions and the threat of being wrongfully suspected of serious crimes. GFF wishes to take an active role in these developments by promoting a fundamental rights-based approach to ADM systems and laying the groundwork for future effective litigation against restrictions on platform users’ rights.

 

Global Data Justice Project
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2022
€45.000
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2022
€45.000

Tilburg University’s Global Data Justice Project explored technology-led and market-driven “sector transgressions”, analysing how companies from the defence, intelligence and security sectors have pivoted to find new applications in areas such as health and education.

Global Health Advocates (GHA)
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€145.706
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€145.706

Global Health Advocates (GHA) is a 15 year-old French NGO which carries out political advocacy in France and with EU institutions to ensure that policies and resources are effectively addressing health inequalities. With the support of the European AI Fund, GHA plans to capitalise on existing coalition work and advocacy expertise in France to seize the AI policy agenda, document its impact on access to healthcare, monitor and challenge public investments and the implementation of AI policy, and ensure greater social accountability. This project will help build GHA’s capacity, and that of its coalition, to create a civil society ecosystem capable of mobilising its forces to preserve the public interest when it comes to the implementation of AI in healthcare.

Glitch
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€309.982,32
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€309.982,32

Glitch is a UK charity committed to ending the abuse of women and marginalised people online. Through workshops, training, reports and programmes, Glitch equips the intersectional community to become the digital citizens we need in the world today. From grassroots to systemic change, Glitch advocates for an online world that is a safe space for all.

The AI Fund’s capacity building grant enabled Glitch to recruit and onboard a Head of Policy, Research and Campaigns, thereby adding capacity, expertise and strategic oversight to the team, and facilitated the commission of “Artificial Intelligence & Online and Technology-facilitated Gender-Based Violence: An EU Landscape Analysis”, a report providing insights into current gaps around intersectional AI policy. Glitch has completed scoping analysis of the AI Act to identify two strategic points for their expertise to support Black women and other marginalised groups across Europe: deepfake image abuse, and user redress from AI harm (outside of the criminal justice system). Over the funding period, Glitch developed partnerships with other cohort members ENAR and EDRi, and are supporting sector efforts on Emotion Recognition and Predictive Policing prohibitions.

Health Action International
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€270.000
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€270.000

Health Action International (HAI) is an independent non-profit organisation. It conducts research and advocacy to advance policies that enable access to safe, effective, affordable and quality-assured medicines and rational medicine use for everyone, everywhere. HAI focuses on creating long-lasting changes to government and industry policies and practices, rather than on temporary solutions.

Given the information asymmetry available to policymakers, it has become apparent how important it is that the civil society voice for human rights and public health is at the table to balance corporate interests. The grant from the AI fund has enabled HAI to find its voice, and to establish expertise in the area and increase awareness of issues at the intersection of AI policy and health as their capacity grows.

HAI has been analysing the impact of the EU AI Act on AI used in healthcare and have developed a report and diverse advocacy materials as result. They have used these materials in advocacy meetings with MEPs and their assistants and have suggested amendments to strengthen the regulation of health-related AI. Several amendments were tabled by GUE/NGL, the Verts/ALE, and ECR. As a result of their work, the implications of the AI Act on healthcare, which were sorely neglected, have received more attention. Several MEPs acknowledged they lacked expertise, which is why they did not actively negotiate any concerns in this field and were inclined to take on recommendations from the powerful pharmaceutical and MedTech lobby, who advocate for deregulation and exclusion of health AI and medical devices from the Act. Alongside this, the grant has enabled us to grow a network of organisations, through meetings and public talks. These efforts are starting to yield concrete outcomes. Together with the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at King’s College London HAI has applied for a CASE Studentship PhD opportunity. The grant also enabled them to join the EMA’s Pharmacovigilance Risk Assessment Committee Multistakeholder Drafting Group for Reflection Paper on Digital Support to Risk Minimisation Measures and Their Effectiveness Evaluation. Which is a mouthful description for a group which will advise on the guidance which EMA should develop on use of digital tools for providing patient information.

Hermes Center (Associazione Hermes)
Jan 2024 -
Dec 2024
€30.000
Jan 2024 -
Dec 2024
€30.000

The project is a joint-endeavour between the Hermes Center and the Good Lobby Italy. The Hermes Center protects people’s digital rights, through the publication of research and investigations, support and dissemination of open and free software and continuous advocacy and awareness raising activities.  

In this joint project, organisations will build compelling narratives and public campaigns around risks of AI and the impacts of the European AI Act in Italy. They will organise an exhibition to bring new people into the debate and politics of AI and surveillance technologies. They will also run a social media campaign to mobilise people for change.  

Homo Digitalis
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€108.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€108.000

Homo Digitalis was founded in 2018. It is the first and only digital rights civil society organisation in Greece, and is a proud member of the European Digital Rights (EDRi) network. Its goal is the protection of human rights and freedoms in the digital age. It strives to influence legislators and policy makers on a national level, and raise awareness among the wider public regarding digital rights issues. When digital rights are jeopardised by public or private actors, Homo Digitalis carries out investigations, conducts studies and takes legal action. Homo Digitalis has a strong track record of successful action in the field of AI and human rights protection in Greece, enjoying victories, recognition and an important network of allies. However, its actions are conducted on a completely volunteer basis and this status limits its strategic impact and negatively affects the organisation’s future development and sustainability. With the support of the European AI Fund, Homo Digitalis will be able to hire a full-time Director of AI Matters for two years, set up the framework necessary for transitioning to a full-time organisation and strategize sustainable future growth. The objective is to take a big step towards the transformation of Homo Digitalis into a strong human rights watchdog in the field of AI development and deployment, especially on matters related to technology-led policing and border management activities.

Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL)
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€284.000
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€284.000

ICCL is Ireland’s leading independent human rights organisation. Fully independent of business and government, ICCL has been at the forefront of progressive grassroots change in Ireland since its founding and its work is rooted in international human rights legal and policy expertise.

The AI Fund’s support enabled ICCL to develop new technical expertise, with which they identified and corrected critical flaws in the AI Act that would have severely undermined the protection of people and their fundamental rights. These errors had not been identified by other organisations or by the co-legislators. They succeeded in correcting these flaws because official and legislators across the political spectrum have come to respect ICCL’s technical insight and forensic amendments. ICCL has been invited to brief all major European Parliament parties. Their recommendations have been taken on board by all of them, in more than 100 amendments. ICCL will work with the European Parliament and the Council to strengthen the Liability Directives further.

Mnemonic
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€224.983
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€224.983

Mnemonic works globally to help human rights defenders effectively use digital documentation of human rights violations and international crimes to support advocacy, justice and accountability.

The support provided by the European AI Fund has helped Mnemonic work with national and EU level policymakers in multi-stakeholder forums and conduct direct advocacy through coalitions. The Fund supported Mnemonic’s work on three counts: shaping and influencing public and policy discourse around AI and ADM governance at the European and national level, raising awareness mainly around content removals, and engaging in coalition work on content moderation.

As part of the DSA Human Rights Alliance, alongside other civil society organisations, Mnemonic pushed for valuable changes in the DSA to ensure that the final version better safeguards the freedoms, rights and safety of users. These included: 1) Transparency reporting and having social media platforms report on the use of automation for content moderation, specify its precise purposes, and explain how they determine if it is accurate; 2) Requiring that platforms notify users when content has been “demoted” or is subject to other measures; and 3) Including special requirements for very large online platforms (VLOPs) to carry out additional due diligence on the impacts of their moderation policies and operations. The European AI Fund also supported Mnemonic in increasing their organisational capacity to engage in the EU legislative process and in gaining further visibility within the European civil society space by engaging with coalitions.

Moje Państwo Foundation
Apr 2021 -
May 2023
€98.666
Apr 2021 -
May 2023
€98.666

Moje Państwo Foundation’s mission is to strengthen citizens’ right to access information, secure freedom of expression and tackle corruption. Moje Państwo wants governments to be transparent and accountable, including when using technology that impacts citizens’ rights and obligations. Moje Państwo creates tools, and conducts research and strategic litigation that aims to increase transparency and civic participation. The organisation focuses mainly on Central and Eastern Europe but also conducts projects on a global scale.

Thanks to the European AI Fund’s grant, Moje Państwo was able to develop its capacity as a European digital policy advocacy organisation. By attending conferences, discussions and workshops they have strengthened two main areas of competence. Firstly, the implementation and use of AI/ADM systems in the public sector and secondly, how to effectively influence policy at the national and EU level. Moje Państwo is now recognised as an expert in the field of the use of technology by the state. This is especially true because of their participation in the working groups on AI and on the strategic directions of data management, both of which operate at the Chancellery of the Prime Minister in Poland. The grant further enabled Moje Państwo to support public officials with their expertise, with two of their reports published on the government’s AI portal in materials intended for the public sector. Their postulates, expressed as part of consultations or letters addressed to EU bodies, were partially noticed and appeared among the amendments to the AI Act as part of the legislative work. They also succeeded in a case to force the Polish Ministry of Justice to disclose the algorithm used to randomly allocate cases to judges in the common courts, the implications of which will be of real importance for public administration practices in terms of disclosing this type of information to citizens.

Novi Sindikat
Sep 2023 -
Sep 2024
€30.000
Sep 2023 -
Sep 2024
€30.000

Novi Sindikat is a trade union in Croatia dedicated to advancing workers’ rights. Novi Sindikat serves as a unified platform for workers to voice their concerns, negotiate for living wages, and enhanced benefits. In 2023, while closely collaborating with platform workers, Novi Sindikat took a proactive stance in organising and representing the interests of platform workers in response to reWolt protests.  

With the Ecosystem grant, Novi Sindikat supports collaboration between trade unions advocating for and supporting the implementation of the EU Platform Workers Directiveempowering them to engage in collective bargaining in the AI-driven world of work and effectively protects workers’ rights 

The project also equips trade unions with the necessary knowledge and digital literacy skills to effectively navigate the complexities of AI applications in workplaces, such as exploring issues related to data recovery as means to reverse current power imbalances at work 

Panoptykon Foundation
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€135.166
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€135.166

Panoptykon Foundation is a Polish watchdog with a mission to protect fundamental rights in the context of growing surveillance and new technologies. Panoptykon keeps an eye on those who collect and use personal data to influence people, including public authorities, intelligence agencies and private corporations. They keep track of new legislation, develop alternative regulatory solutions and intervene in strategic cases.

The grant by the European AI Fund enabled Panoptykon to engage in advocacy at both the EU and national level as well as engage in informal dialogue with industry and academic stakeholders who influence political processes in the European Parliament and Polish position in the Council. They commissioned a survey that confirmed EU citizens’ support for arguments formulated by civil society in the debate on AI Act, and hired a specialised lobbying agency (AWO) to help design and carry out effective political communication in Brussels. Panoptykon recruited a new member of staff (initially as an external expert) with more than a decade’s experience in the field of human rights and technology and who will work on the AI Act in 2023. Panoptyokn’s work has influenced positions taken by shadow rapporteurs in the European Parliament and Polish government in the Council. While it is still impossible to predict the final outcome of this complex political process, it’s promising that many of the ideas pushed by the Panoptykon and EDRi working group for amending the Draft AI Act are “on the table” and subject to serious consideration.

The Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM)
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€270.000
Apr 2021 -
Jun 2024
€270.000

The Platform for International Cooperation on Undocumented Migrants (PICUM) is a network organisation that seeks a world where human mobility is recognised as a normal reality, and where all people are guaranteed their human rights regardless of migration or residence status. Bringing together a broad range of experience and expertise, PICUM generates and coordinates a humane and informed response to undocumented migrants’ realities and provides a platform for its members and partners to engage policy makers and the general public in the full realisation of their rights. Founded in 2001 as an initiative of frontline organisations to mobilise support for undocumented migrants, today PICUM leads a network of 164 civil society organisations in 31 countries.

Since PICUM has become a grantee, they have deepened partnerships with actors from digital rights and other sectors in collective advocacy on the AI Act (AIA), generally, and more specifically on migration and AI. This has involved collaboration on the preparation of a briefing and proposed amendments to the draft regulation; joint meetings with MEPs and their assistants; strategy and coordination calls; and the development of collective outputs. They have also expanded their engagement on digital rights to other parts of PICUM’s work beyond the AIA, such as in the area of child rights by facilitating constructive engagement with privacy and surveillance concerns through the lens of their work on undocumented children; and on labour rights, working with members and partners to understand and address the growing role of digital technologies for workplace control and implications for migrant workers. PICUM has continued to create and share tools and analysis that highlight the links between AI, technology and migration, and to articulate in different spaces and for different audiences the related impact and harms. Their contribution has, then, been in their participation in the collective advocacy on the AI Act and thus in shaping a shared analysis and approach; and their role in shaping understanding more generally of the intersection between tech and migration in ways that extend to other policy domains.

SHARE Foundation and Politiscope
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€194.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€194.000

SHARE Foundation and Politiscope’s Monitoring AI-backed Surveillance Architectures (MASA) project aims to advocate for better human rights standards in the development and implementation of legislation around AI in Europe. In particular, countries in south-east Europe clearly lack capacity to implement AI systems in ways that takes human rights into account. At this critical juncture, when vital legislation is being developed, SHARE Foundation and Politiscope will join forces to monitor and advocate on the development and implementation of AI legislation, as well as existing, ongoing and planned AI projects in Serbia and Croatia. The ultimate hope is to develop a model that can be useful in other countries as well.

Statewatch
Jan 2024 -
Dec 2024
€29.453
Jan 2024 -
Dec 2024
€29.453

Statewatch produces and promotes critical research, policy analysis and investigative journalism to inform debates, movements and campaigns on civil liberties, human rights and democratic standards. Statewatch seeks to provide information, analysis and tools for civil society in the UK and the EU to hold the state to account and achieve positive social change. 

Statewatch’s project will investigate the EU’s deployment of potentially harmful AI systems for border control, migration and security. 

The goal of this project is to increase democratic scrutiny and oversight of the EU’s ongoing activities to operationalise AI use by border guards, law enforcement and migration authorities. Use of AI is currently being encouraged through an AI roadmap managed by a working group of eu-Lisa, the EU’s justice and home affairs IT systems agency. Statewatch will communicate their findings and engage with the Members of the European Parliament to increase their awareness and to demand change and democratic accountability.   

Superrr Lab
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€38.800
Jan 2021 -
Dec 2021
€38.800

Superrr Lab examined the conceptualisation, development and deployment of digital public infrastructure in the fight against Covid-19, paying special attention to the role of digital civil society. They published a “Covid-19 Infrastructure Playbook” to help civil society organisations and governments navigate the ongoing digital transformation, be aware of the risks and opportunities, and act with public interest in mind.

 

Superrr Lab
Jan 2024 -
Oct 2024
€26.500
Jan 2024 -
Oct 2024
€26.500

SUPERRR is a community and a lab. They develop visions and projects to create more equitable futures by researching technologies, building networks and shaping new narratives. SUPERRR challenges existing paradigms by bringing new perspectives and stakeholders to the discussionSUPERRR has led extensive work with social media content moderators and data workers in Germany and Kenya.  

SUPERRR’s project aims to secure fair working conditions and rights for frontline AI workers that are oftentimes exploited by wealthy tech companies. The project will enable SUPERRR to identify levers to improve AI workers’ working conditions through policy engagement on the Supply Chain Act (EU) and the Digital Services Act (DSA) enforcement.  

SUPERRR will conduct research to map and understand the landscape, gaps and opportunities for change in tech policy and regulations and directly engage with AI data workers to contribute to policy initiatives and form demands.  

Systemic Justice
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€250.000
Nov 2022 -
Nov 2024
€250.000

Technology harms society’s most marginalised groups, whether through the AI-assisted policing of racialised groups and surveillance of people crossing borders, automated decision-making in social service provision, or countless other implementations. The project supported by this grant explores how technology and AI cause daily, systemic harms to marginalised groups across Europe, and seeks to disrupt and alleviate these harms by pioneering a new model of community-driven litigation. Simultaneously, Systemic Justice aims to inform the policy and advocacy work of organisations in Europe, forming partnerships with movements and collectives to build their power and knowledge and put communities in the driver’s seat every step of the way.

Who Targets Me
Sep 2023 -
Mar 2024
€29.825
Sep 2023 -
Mar 2024
€29.825

Who Targets Me works on online political advertising transparency and accountability. They develop software tools that explain the uses and increase transparency of digital political ads, research into how campaigns use them, and advocate for better ad transparency from tech platforms and in law. 

The Ecosystem grant supports new research and advocacy on the use of generative AI in political advertising. The project explores the (potential) use of generative AI in political advertising on online platforms, the associated risks and the necessary safeguards and legislative frameworks.  

It enables the organisation to shape policy responses, as well as platforms’ approaches, and to highlight areas of risk as the platforms compete to offer new AI-powered features.