Jat Singh

Compliant & Accountable Systems Group
Computer Laboratory
University of Cambridge

jatinder.singh @ cl.cam.ac.uk


I'm a Principal Research Asssociate (≈Research Professor) at the Dept. Computer Science & Technology (Computer Laboratory), University of Cambridge, where I lead the Compliant and Accountable Systems research group. The group works at the intersection of computer science and law, considering the mechanisms by which technology can be better designed, engineered and deployed to accord with legal and regulatory concerns, and works to better ground policy/regulatory discussions in technical realities. Broadly, we take an interdisciplinary approach towards issues of governance, control, agency, accountability, security, privacy and trust regarding emerging and data-driven technologies.

I also co-chair the Trust & Technology Initiative, which drives research exploring the dynamics of trust and distrust in relation to internet technologies, society and power, and I am a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute, the UK's national institute for data science & artificial intelligence, where I collaborate on various projects. I also currently hold an EPSRC Fellowship.

I am active in tech-policy discussions, which has me involved various advisory and outreach initiatives, including with government, regulators and civil society groups.

I undertook my PhD in Computer Science (topic: distributed systems & security) at the University of Cambridge, and have previously studied some law. I have worked for large and small IT service companies, ran a medical IT startup, and provide consulting services. Much of my commercial experience concerned health and judicial applications, areas with strong governance requirements.

I am originally from Australia, which is far, far away from Cambridge. But I do enjoy travel!

Research projects
  • Realising Accountable Intelligent Systems (RAInS)
    Exploring issues of accountability, particularly relating to audit, in intelligent systems (AI/ML driven environments). A collaboration with the Universities of Aberdeen and Oxford. Funded by the EPSRC.
  • Towards a legally-compliant Internet of Things
    Investigating means for addressing compliance and accountability issues in the Internet of Things (pervasive computing). The initial focus is on data flow management (control/audit). Funded by the EPSRC.
  • Internet of Stings: Data flow auditing in the consumer IoT
    Investigating issues of data flow leakage and blocking in the consumer IoT, and the associated legal implications. In collaboration with Imperial College, funded by the Information Commissioner's Offic (ICO).
  • Advancing Data Justice and Practice
    Developing resources to help policy-makers, practitioners and impacted communities gain a broader understanding of data governance [website]. A collaboration led by the Alan Turing Institute funded by the Global Partnership onn AI (GPAI).
  • Detecting and understanding harmful content online
    Exploring methods and tooling for detecting harmful content (inc. hate speech), and developing governance regimes. A Turing funded project, in collaboration with King's College London, University College London and Queen Mary University of London.
  • Modern Slavery: Privacy, security and trust implications
    Exploring the issues of data management in the context of modern slavery, across various stakeholders. A project collaboration with the Alan Turing institute.
  • Legal Systems and Artificial Intelligence
    Exploring the potential of, and limits to, the computational techniques underlying law-related AI, and the legal, ethical and cultural dimensions to such in different regions. Funded by the ESRC and Japanese Science & Technology Agency.
  • Contextual fairness in ML
    Exploring context-aware approaches to issues of fairness in machine learning systems. Funded by Aviva.
  • Microsoft Cloud Computing Research Centre (MCCRC)
    A collaborative project with the QMUL Centre for Commercial Law Studies to perform a tech-legal analysis of issues at the intersection of cutting-edge technology and law. In particular we explore the technical and legal implications of tech 'buzzwords'. For details see here.
Previous projects
  • Ethics & governance of ML and autonomous systems in the digital society
    An exploratory seed grant on the societal impacts of emerging systems, working with colleagues from Sociology, Digital Humanities and Public Health.
  • Compliance: Perspectives from startups
    Exploring the commercial angle to data protection (GDPR) and compliance, in collaboration with the Digital Catapult Centre.
  • People v Bots: Detecting social media manipulation in the developing world
    A GCRF project using machine learning to detect and indicate cases of social media being used for purposes of political manipulation in developing countries.
  • Managing everyThing
    Concerned the development of an IoT management (command-and-control) infrastructure. This was used to enhance public spaces and indicate to the public the IoT’s potential, and highlight issues of agency and control. Outputs were demonstrated at the Science Museum.
  • CloudSafetyNet
    A collaboration with Imperial College investigating the means for governing data flow, end-to-end within cloud services. A high-level project overview can be found here.
  • PAL: Personal Assisted Living
    Academic-industrial collaboration on infrastructure for enabling next-generation healthcare and assisted living services.
  • CareGrid
    A collaboration with Imperial College on policy-driven infrastructure for managing trust, security and privacy in healthcare. See here for an overview.


STUDENT PROJECTS : I am keen to supervise, at all levels, projects in areas including: `algorithmic accountability' and `automated-decision making', 'security/privacy/data protection, social aspects of data/tech, distributed/mobile systems/IoT/AR/VR, digital art & interactive environments, etc. Follow the link for some suggestions. Note these are just intended as a guide - I'm happy to explore any projects broadly related in the space. The best way forward is to chat - do get in contact!

I run the Advanced Computer Science MPhil module Technology, Law & Society. The course gives a practical background to how law, policy and societal concerns interact with technology. The goal is to drive awareness of how systems can be designed and engineered to be more legally compliant, support accountability regimes, and generally better for society.