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6 AI governance principles to help enterprises cope with risk in the fast-moving world

Due to the rapid democratisation of artificial intelligence (AI) and an unprecedented pace of adoption, enterprises may not be able to tackle the unfamiliar risks that arise and the subsequent compliance and regulatory pressures that follow. Traditional approaches to IT governance are falling short in the AI context, which has not kept up with the pace of innovations.

AI implementations are often highly decentralised and bespoke across the enterprise, making it difficult to install risk management mechanisms. AI is often in-built into third-party software, hardware, and services that are deployed to specific business units, potentially exposed to undiscovered risks in legal, reputational, data privacy, and operational areas.

An AI governance framework should rest on the following principles, which need to be incorporated throughout the lifecycle and not just during model validation.

A proper ethical AI framework is not just about adhering to legal and regulatory aspects but comprises fundamental values deeply grounded in individual rights, fairness, and privacy. Ethical AI guidelines and their enforcement help screen out unfair and illegitimate uses of AI. Enterprises should have clearly stated policies that are easily accessible at all levels in the organisation and structured review processes to ensure compliance. Frequent and targeted audits and appropriate internal feedback and contesting mechanisms can flag ethical concerns ahead of time. Here also, adversarial testing can expose those “edge cases” where the model behaves inappropriately, and stress tests the system and allied processes that are downstream.

The article orginally was published on Forbes India.

The Boston Global Forum (BGF), in collaboration with the United Nations Centennial Initiative, released a major work entitled Remaking the World – Toward an Age of Global Enlightenment.   More than twenty distinguished leaders, scholars, analysts, and thinkers put forth unprecedented approaches to the challenges before us. These include President of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen, Governor Michael Dukakis, Father of Internet Vint Cerf, Former Secretary of Defense Ash Carter, Harvard University Professors Joseph Nye and Thomas Patterson, MIT Professors Nazli Choucri and Alex ‘Sandy’ Pentland.  The BGF introduced core concepts shaping pathbreaking international initiatives, notably, the Social Contract for the AI Age, an AI International Accord, the Global Alliance for Digital Governance, the AI World Society (AIWS) Ecosystem, AIWS City, and Global Enlightenment Mountain (GEM).