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AI Policy and Governance Working Group

Recent, rapid developments in artificial intelligence (AI) have the potential to improve the lives of many people across the world. These same developments have also highlighted the harms and risks posed by AI systems and tools, and the need for innovative policy and governance to address these challenges. 

Calls for effective, agile governance to ensure that AI systems and tools are developed and used responsibly have come from many quarters, including from researchers, industry, policymakers, civil society, and the public. These varying perspectives suggest a continuum of proximate and future areas of concern, including bias and discrimination, destabilization of the employment sector and in worker experience, security vulnerabilities, sustainability issues, the erosion of democracy and public trust, catastrophic outcomes, and more.

Members of the AI Policy and Governance Working Group (AIPGWG) represents a mix of sectors, disciplines, perspectives, and approaches. Despite these differences, we agree that both present-day harms and neglected risks on the horizon warrant urgent attention in order to fulfill the public’s legitimate expectation of safety and respect for their rights. We also agree that it is not only possible but necessary to address the multitude of concerns raised by the expanding use of artificial intelligence systems and tools and their increasing power. We recommend actionable policy solutions.

On September 30, 2023, the AIPGWG submitted recommendations concerning global AI governance to the United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology.

On June 12, 2023 the AIPGWG submitted recommendations concerning 1) evaluation of AI systems, and 2) access to AI models and systems to encourage transparency and accountability in response to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Request for Comment on AI Accountability Policy.

The scale of social, political, and economic change that may be effectuated by the expanding use of AI systems and tools warrants broad discussion. The AIPGWG organizes events that engage the public in discussion of the societal implications of AI.

Building the World We Want: Artificial Intelligence and Global Governance
September 20, 2023

Artificial intelligence has the potential to improve the lives of many people across the world. The breakneck pace of its development has also highlighted its potential for harm—and the urgent need for robust and innovative policy and governance. This panel of experts examines what forms of global collaboration are needed to address issues such as inequality and climate change, privacy protections, and human rights. From shared regulation and alignment of democratic laws, to equitable benefit distribution, to the prevention of dangerous AI proliferation, to the consolidation of power and more, the evolving nature of AI—combined with its global impact—requires the untangling of complex dynamics to provide a clear picture for effective future policymaking and to engender a more just and safer world.

Acclaimed IAS scholar and writer Alondra Nelson led a discussion on the transnational impacts of artificial intelligence and the need for global collaboration with Karen Kornbluh, Distinguished Fellow for Technology and Competitiveness at the German Marshall Fund of the U.S. and former U.S. Ambassador to the OECD; Maria Ressa, CEO and President of Rappler and Nobel laureate; Olatunbosun Tijani, the Honorable Minister of Communications, Innovation and Digital Economy for the Republic of Nigeria; and Tim Wu, Julius Silver Professor of Law, Science and Technology at Columbia University, and an introduction from Director and Leon Levy Professor David Nirenberg.

Presented in partnership with the New York Public Library.

Steering AI for the Public Good
June 6, 2023

A panel of computer scientists, social scientists, technology developers, and policy advisors from the AI Policy and Governance Working Group discussed how the research community, industry, government, civil society, and the public can work collaboratively on strategies for the development of AI systems that embed a diverse and representative range of humanity’s priorities and advance democratic values. With Miranda Bogen, Brian Christian, Sorelle Friedler and William Isaac, in conversation with Harold F. Linder Professor Alondra Nelson, with an introduction from Director and Leon Levy Professor David Nirenberg.


The AI Policy and Governance Working Group is generously supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.