Despite some of the decidedly unethical behavior in the wake of the G7 Summit in Charlevoix, Quebec this week – there was some good news in the ethical use of AI technology. The G7 Summit host, Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and the French President Emmanuel Macron agreed to a collaboration in the study of ethical AI. The multi-national collaborative effort will form an independent expert group from both nations along with representatives from private industry, NGOs and nonprofits. The new ethical AI commitment, announced by Trudeau and Macron, will create guidelines for the future use of artificial intelligence technology.
The ethical AI commitment will first outline challenges and opportunities just as AI technology is growing worldwide to mixed reviews by experts in the field. The agreement seeks to learn how to best put AI to work for social and economic benefits, while avoiding the pitfalls of turning Earth into the post-apocalyptic hellscape prophesied by popular fiction. The agreement’s findings and best practices will be shared with participating nations to help see AI fulfill its potential for the betterment of humankind.
In a joint press conference with Macron, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said. “This document underscores the development of this technology that is focused on humans and inclusion, diversity, human rights, innovation and economic growth, Canada and France will collaborate to establish an international group with government experts, scientists, and civil society members. This group will become a world reference to study challenges related to AI and to define best practices.”
CIFAR is a Toronto-based artificial intelligence strategy agency and a world leader in AI research has applauded the commitment.
“AI has the potential to change almost everything about how we work and live,” says Alan Bernstein, president and CEO of CIFAR. “We enthusiastically endorse the creation of an international study group charged with understanding emerging AI technologies and how to ensure they are beneficial. We look forward to working with our partners in Canada and internationally to support this commitment.”
Finding solutions for ethical use of AI couldn’t be more prescient. We’ve already seen AI’s efficiency in parsing mountains of data so it can run Facebook ad campaigns, control military drones with Google data, or even drive cars for Uber, all of which has left us with many ethical questions.
Here’s hoping the commitment succeeds in finding the best uses for AI to make the world a better place, and not turning us all into organic slaves to the machines.