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Transatlantic Approaches on Digital Governance: A New Social Contract in Artificial Intelligence

Former Heads of State and Government, Members of Club de Madrid, will explore a social contract to govern digital transformations at Policy Lab on digital technologies and artificial intelligence, in Harvard and MIT, Boston

World Leadership Alliance-Club de Madrid (WLA-CdM), in partnership with the Boston Global Forum (BGF), is organizing a transatlantic and multi-stakeholder dialogue on global challenges and policy solutions, for a new social contract on digital technologies and artificial intelligence (AI). This event would not be possible without the support of Mr. Nguyen Van Tuong, Founder and Chairman of ATC Tram Huong Khanh Hoa.


The Policy Lab Transatlantic Approaches on Digital Governance: A New Social Contract in Artificial Intelligence will take place at Harvard University and MIT campuses, Boston on 28-29 April. At Harvard University, the first day of discussions will be held in a roundtable format of around 50 participants, including WLA-CdM Members, representatives and experts of multilateral institutions, governments, technological companies, academia, and civil society organizations. The second day, an event open to the public will be held under a plenary format at MIT. The roundtable´s methodology will also include a preliminary preparatory phase from February 20 – April 20, based on an online exchange as AIWS Innovation Network Roundtable, that will contribute to the discussion to be held on 28-29 April.

Over the years, transatlantic relations have been characterized by close cooperation and continuous work based on common interests and values such as democracy, rule of law, and fairness. This collaboration, currently at a low time, has been essential to enhance consensus and strengthen the multilateral system and it is imperative to identify new areas for agreement. Within this context, the AIWS Innovation Network will propose ideas for a new model for the AI economy aimed at opening new opportunities for people, fostering peace and preserving basic human right worldwide. On this basis, American and European approaches towards the creation of a new social contract on AI and digital governance will be compared and, under the critical eye of former democratic Heads of State or Government – Members of WLA-CdM – this Policy Lab will stimulate new thinking and bring out areas for agreement from both regions.

Similarly, and within the framework of the United Nations 75th anniversary, toward Centennial of UN 2045, the discussion will generate space for reflection to think about “the future we want” and to encourage and strengthen international cooperation regarding the reforms necessary in this front at the multilateral level. This Policy Lab will, therefore, offer a multi-stakeholder platform to stimulate innovative thinking, identify responsibilities in which each stakeholder can commit, and formulate policy recommendations; to establish a Transatlantic Alliance for Digital Governance. A follow-up policy discussion will be held in Europe, at a date yet to be determined.

A final report, containing actionable policy recommendations for policy-makers and multilateral organizations, informed by best practices and innovative approaches from both sides of the Atlantic, will be produced and widely distributed after this process. This document will better equip leaders from both sides of the Atlantic to develop and implement policy-making processes that engage technological companies, civil society organizations, citizens and AI assistants as key stakeholders of digital governance while protecting the democratic mandate of public policy- makers.




World Leadership Alliance-Club de Madrid (WLA-CdM) is the largest worldwide assembly of political leaders working to strengthen democratic values, good governance and the well-being of citizens across the globe. As a non-profit, non-partisan, international organization, its network is composed of more than 100 democratic former Presidents and Prime Ministers from over 70 countries, together with a global body of advisors and expert practitioners, who offer their voice and agency on a pro bono basis, to today’s political, civil society leaders and policymakers. WLA- CdM responds to a growing demand for trusted advice in addressing the challenges involved in achieving ‘democracy that delivers’, building bridges, bringing down silos and promoting dialogue for the design of better policies for all. This alliance, providing the experience, access and convening power of its Members, represents an independent effort towards sustainable development, inclusion and peace, not bound by the interest or pressures of institutions and governments.

In 2019 the WLA-CdM launched a ‘Call to Action’ to promote a democratic approach to Digital Transformation and the Future of Democracy, developed during its 2019 Annual Policy Dialogue, whereby it invites world leaders to take proactive action to frame the development of digital technologies in an inclusive, fair and rights-based legal, political and social framework.

The Boston Global Forum (BGF) is a not-for-profit think tank based in Boston, Massachusetts. Its mission is to bring together, in an open and accessible public forum, an eclectic and engaging spectrum of esteemed academic leaders, real-world experts, thought leaders, media experts and promising young leaders, who are dedicated to seeking peaceful solutions to the most contentious issues of our times. An offshoot of The Boston Global Forum, The Michael Dukakis Institute for Leadership and Innovation (MDI) was born in 2015. Its mission is to generate ideas, create solutions, and deploy initiatives to solve global issues, especially initiatives in Cybersecurity and AI World Society Innovation Network (AIWS-IN).

The Artificial Intelligence World Society (AIWS) is a set of values, ideas, concepts and protocols for standards and norms whose goal is to advance the peaceful development of AI to improve the quality of life for all humanity. It was conceived by the Michael Dukakis Institute for Leadership and Innovation (MDI) and established on November 22, 2017. Read more here.


  • Further details of WLA-CdM are available by contacting Agustina Briano, Outreach and Development Coordinator of WLA-CdM: abriano@clubmadrid.org
  • Further details of BGF and AIWS are available by contacting Tuan Anh Nguyen, Co- founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Boston Global Forum, and Director of The Michael Dukakis Institute for Leadership and Innovation: Tuan_Nguyen@bostonglobalforum.org
  • For press credentials please contact Dick Pirozzolo: dick@pirozzolo.com /+16179594613
  • For press inquiries and/or interview requests of WLA-CdM Members, please reach Alejandro Hita, Communications Manager of WLA-CdM: ahita@clubmadrid.org / +34607694354

Download the PDF version here A New Social Contract in AI_Press Note_Boston – Official