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Global AI Policy

Published
August 2, 2021
Author
Anna Yelizarova

How countries and organizations around the world are approaching the benefits and risks of AI

Artificial intelligence (AI) holds great economic, social, medical, security, and environmental promise. AI systems can help people acquire new skills and training, democratize services, design and deliver faster production times and quicker iteration cycles, reduce energy usage, provide real-time environmental monitoring for pollution and air quality, enhance cybersecurity defenses, boost national output, reduce healthcare inefficiencies, create new kinds of enjoyable experiences and interactions for people, and improve real-time translation services to connect people around the world. For all of these reasons and many more researchers are thrilled with the potential uses of AI systems to help manage some of the world’s hardest problems and improve countless lives.

But in order to realize this potential, the challenges associated with AI development have to be addressed. This page highlights three complementary resources to help decision makers navigate AI policy: A global landscape of national and international AI strategies; a list of prominent AI policy challenges and key recommendations that have been made to address them; and a list of AI policy resources for those hoping to learn more.

National and International AI Strategies: A Global Landscape

Countries around the world are establishing governmental and intergovernmental strategies and initiatives to guide the development of artificial intelligence (AI). Global cooperation, standards, and norms will be critical components in the advancement of safe and beneficial AI. FLI is tracking and sharing AI policies around the world in order to promote transparency and awareness of emerging initiatives. AI and artificial general intelligence (AGI) may be destabilizing for governments, societies, and economies. As AI technologies develop further, there will be ever greater need for coordination and cooperation between all states and global powers. (Hover over the colored countries below for a quick summary of their policies, or click on a country for more detailed information.)

AI Policy Challenges and Recommendations

The following 14 topics represent particular areas of concern for the safe and beneficial development of AI, both in the near- and far-term. Each topic is described in brief and followed by examples of existing policy principles and recommendations as well as links to additional resources. Addressing these topics should be a priority for policymakers seeking to harness the benefits of AI while preparing for and mitigating potential threats. These topics are not sector-specific (i.e. transportation or healthcare), rather they address overarching AI policy concerns that cut across multiple industries and use cases.

  1. Enabling Beneficial AI Research and Development
  2. Global Governance, Race Conditions, and International Cooperation
  3. Economic Impacts, Labor Shifts, Inequality, and Technological Unemployment
  4. Accountability, Transparency, and Explainability
  5. Surveillance, Privacy, and Civil Liberties
  6. Fairness, Ethics, and Human Rights
  7. Political Manipulation and Computational Propaganda
  8. Human Dignity, Autonomy, and Psychological Impact
  9. Human Health, Augmentation, and Brain-Computer Interfaces
  10. AI Safety
  11. Security and Cybersecurity
  12. Autonomous Weapons
  13. Catastrophic and Existential Risk
  14. Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) and Superintelligence

AI Policy Resources

The resources below include papers, reports, and articles relevant to AI policy debates.

They are organized chronologically in the following seven (interrelated) categories:

  1. AI Policy Overviews and Recommendations
  2. AI Principles
  3. Framing the AI Debate
  4. Promoting Beneficial AI
  5. Social Impacts of AI
  6. Safety, Security, and Existential Risks of AI
  7. AI Technological Landscape

This is intended to be an educational resource. The Future of Life Institute led the development of the Asilomar AI Principles, but does not necessarily endorse the other policy principles or recommendations. This page is a work in progress and will continue to be updated. If you have feedback or information that should be included here, please send a short description to carlos@futureoflife.org.

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