Published 2020-02-11

Schibsted announces research collaboration in responsible AI with KTH Royal Institute of Technology

Schibsted is pairing up with the leading technical university in Stockholm for research on responsible use of data and AI. “Algorithmic applications of data require a socio-technical approach,” says Agnes Stenbom, Responsible Data & AI Specialist at Schibsted.

Agnes Stenbom, Responsible Data & AI Specialist at Schibsted. Photo: Y-Oslo/Netlife

Journalists are exploring new ways of creating and distributing content; digital marketplaces are creating smoother and safer experiences, and financial services are finding novel ways to empower consumers. Artificial Intelligence (AI) is changing the media industry and at Schibsted we are committed to ensuring a sustainable implementation of these new technologies across our portfolio.

AI requires interdisciplinary collaborations

As noted in our contributions to the Norwegian AI strategy, Schibsted believes education and research has a central role to play in ensuring long-term sustainability in AI. Taking our own advice, Schibsted is now pairing up with KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm. Through an industrial PhD collaboration, Schibsted’s Agnes Stenbom will conduct research on the responsible use of data and AI in the Nordic media industry.

“Schibsted is a tech company and a publisher. Interdisciplinarity is built into who we are as an organisation, and we are eager to now start this collaboration with KTH and add another perspective on our work with data and AI” says Chief Privacy and Data Trends officer Ingvild Næss, who will be Stenbom’s industry PhD supervisor.

Representing KTH and the faculty of Industrial Management and Technology, Dr. Mattias Wiggberg and professor Matti Kaulio are also eager to get going with the new collaboration.

“From an academic perspective, Schibsted is quite a unique organisation to study. We are eager to get to know their data-driven media operations even better through our collaboration and wish to generate insights that are of value both to the industry and academic world” says Wiggberg.

Pairing theory and practice

As Schibsted’s Responsible Data and AI Specialist, Agnes Stenbom will pair operational engagements with doctoral-level research. Since joining Schibsted as a management trainee in 2018, Stenbom has been working in various teams – most previously developing solutions within Natural Language Processing and computer vision. Now she is eager to combine theory and practice through her new role:

“The challenges raised by AI and digitalization cannot be met by one sector alone. Algorithmic applications of data require a socio-technical approach with cross-context collaborations. I am very happy and humble to get to serve in such a collaboration in a very hands-on way!”

Helping the media industry shape its own future with AI

As one of the bigger Nordic players within media, Schibsted is committed to helping its industry thrive through AI. As noted by Ingvild Næss, using academic research as a tool for generating insights on how AI could – or should – be employed can be beneficial not only for Schibsted but the media industries at large.

“Global technology companies are steering much of the developments in AI. While their contributions to the technological advancements deserve credit, it is due time that the media industry starts playing a more active role both in terms of developing new tools and deciding how to use them in a good, sustainable manner. We cannot sit and wait for the politicians and regulators to dictate what we need to do. We need to step up and lead the way. This research collaboration is a way for Schibsted to contribute with new insights for our industry and support sustainable implementation of AI in it!” says Ingvild Næss.

When asked about the expected outcomes of her research, Stenbom highlights an industry-need for optimism. “The debates around AI have become somewhat dystopian. I am eager to use this new academic arena as a tool for identifying opportunities and trustworthy ways for the media industry to move forward with AI” says the new PhD candidate.

From left to right: Mattias Wiggberg, Agnes Stenbom, Matti Kaulio, Ingvild Næss.