Advising the 'Smart City': When Artificial Intelligence and Big Data are the Subjects of Professional Advice, What is a Local Government Lawyer to Do?
9 Pages Posted: 6 May 2019
Date Written: April 5, 2019
Technology is redefining modern life at a breakneck pace, and local governments have new and exciting resources and opportunities at their disposal to improve the lives of their citizens. Data gathering technologies for so-called “smart cities,” connected technologies, and artificial intelligence for processing the data enable local governments to be far more responsive to the conditions in their cities. Lawyers advising local governments must therefore be prepared to advise them of the implementation of this technology, which is beyond the scope of what most lawyers are prepared for in their training. While considerable work has gone in to making sure lawyers keep themselves aware of how technology impacts the practice of law, much less study has been directed towards what to do when the technology is not a tool for the lawyer but the subject of legal advice.
This essay looks at the role of the local government lawyer in advising governments in the implementation of these technologies. It proceeds by first looking at the identity of the client in the local government lawyer’s context, then by looking at how lawyers can fulfill their ethical obligations when advising governments on implementation of smart city technology.
Keywords: Artificial Intelligence, A.I., Big Data, Data, Ethics, Professional Responsibility, Local Government, Smart City
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