Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation

Organization founded in 2018 by the UK Government. CDEI is tasked by the Government to connect policymakers, industry, civil society, and the public to develop the right governance regime for data-driven technologies.


The adoption of data-driven technology affects every aspect of our society, and its use is creating opportunities as well as new ethical challenges. The Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CDEI) is an independent advisory body set up and tasked by the UK Government to investigate and advise on how we maximise the benefits of these technologies.

We bring people together from across sectors and society to shape practical recommendations for the government, as well as advice for regulators, and industry, that support responsible innovation and help build a strong, trustworthy system of governance.

We have a unique role with a cross-sector remit. We are a connector between government and wider society, and have a unique mandate to advise the government. We will convene and build on the UK’s vast expertise in governing complex technology, innovation-friendly regulation and its global strength in research and academia.

We aim to give the public a voice in how data-driven technology is governed, promoting the trust that’s crucial for the UK to make the most of AI and data-driven technology.

Our work this year (2019)

We aim to analyse and anticipate the opportunities and risks posed by data-driven technology and put forward practical and evidence-based recommendations to address them.

Targeting policy review

Reporting in December 2020, this review will focus on online targeting, investigating how data is used to shape people’s online environments via the personalisation and targeting of messages, content and services online.

Algorithmic bias policy review

Using a literature review, applied technical research and public engagement workshops, we plan to investigate the issue of algorithmic bias in various sectors, including local government and policing. This review will report in March 2020.

AI Barometer

We are working in collaboration with academics, civil society, government and industry to collate comparative judgments from experts on the application of data-driven technology in the UK. We will use these to develop an AI Barometer that identifies the highest priority opportunities and risks associated with data-driven technology within the CDEI’s remit.

Responsive thematic projects

We also publish shorter reports on important issues of public concern, seeking to bring clarity to an issue or highlight potential solutions to a known challenge. Topics covered this year will include AI and insurance, smart speakers, and ‘deep fakes’.


We have an independent board comprising expert and influential individuals from a range of fields relevant to our mandate. The board has oversight of – and is accountable for – the CDEI’s work and recommendations.

framework agreement sets out how we work with the Department for Digital Culture Media and Sport.

Read more about our work programme, board, and ways of working in the Introduction to the CDEI (PDF, 1.91MB, 16 pages)

Additional information at https://royalsociety.org/news/2018/01/prime-minister-speech-on-national-centre-for-ethical-oversight-of-ai/