Building democratic AI for the EU: Potential, tools, challenges

Research Paper by Simone Benazzo



AI can be a strong tool to defend liberal democracy: EU policymakers should seize that opportunity!

Artificial intelligence (AI) has been widely described as a lethal threat to liberal democracy. It can erode accountability mechanisms and provide autocrats with formidable tools to monitor citizens and steer their preferences. Yet, AI is no longer a distant future scenario: it is already here, and it is here to stay. This policy brief endorses a normative approach to the use of AI, which can turn an enemy into an ally in the EU's effort to uphold democratic values and institutions across the bloc. Drawing on cutting-edge expert research, the report demonstrates how AI technologies can help EU policymakers in three vital areas: assessing member states' violations of the rule of law; fostering civic engagement and democratic participation; and protecting media freedom and pluralism.


About the author

After graduating at the College of Europe in 2017, Simone Benazzo has worked as a freelance journalist and policy analyst for four years, mainly covering the Western Balkans and the Visegrad Countries. In October 2021 he started his PhD in political science at the ULB. His research revolves around the role of independent journalism in resisting autocratization in Central-Eastern Europe. Currently, he is also running a project on media in exile, supported by the Media and Journalism Research Center (MJRC). Besides researching media pluralism, he hikes, improvises and plays football.

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