Empowering Civil Service with AI: CDDO’s Generative AI Courses

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CDDO offers online generative AI courses for government officials, improving digital competencies and promoting the ethical integration of AI into government operations.

The UK’s Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) has recently launched a series of online courses on generative artificial intelligence (AI) designed to improve the digital competencies of civil servants. These courses are available through the Government Campus through Civil Service Training and are open to an unlimited number of learners. The initiative is part of a wider strategy to effectively and ethically integrate generative AI into government services, in line with the government’s digital strategy.

The course curriculum covers a wide range of topics related to generative AI. It includes an introduction to generative AI, its applications and limitations, risks and ethics, practical tools and applications, rapid engineering, and strategies for effective AI management. This diverse curriculum aims to provide comprehensive learning for participants at various proficiency levels by addressing specific learning needs identified by CDDO research. Courses are self-paced and use a combination of articles, videos and optional assignments. In addition, CDDO and the Government Skills and Curriculum Division are developing a new artificial intelligence page on Prospectus Online to offer more specific courses on generative AI and the broader field of AI.

Along with the online courses, CDDO has also published new guidance for government officials on the use of generative AI. This guide includes a list of restricted areas for technology due to its current limitations, emphasizing areas such as fully automated decision-making in critical sectors and situations requiring rapid responses. The guidance also includes 10 principles to guide the safe, responsible and effective use of generative AI in government organizations.

These CDDO initiatives represent a significant step towards increasing digital literacy in public administration, equipping civil servants with the skills and knowledge they need to navigate and contribute to the evolving digital landscape of government. CDDO’s approach emphasizes a commitment to harnessing the potential of AI while recognizing and mitigating its risks.​​​​

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