Whoever Leads AI Will Lead the World

Overview As artificial intelligence use becomes more widespread, government entities, trade associations, industry professionals and citizens are coming together to shape and monitor ethical leadership in the technology.

Technology leaders from around the world are understanding that, increasingly, tech is allowing more to be done with less interaction. Artificial intelligence (AI) has advanced from a robotic concept seen in movies to being part of wayfinding apps in daily use.

At CES 2020, Congressional Candidate The Honorable Darrell Issa introduced the “Global Race for Leadership in AI” panel by describing the ways “ownership” of AI could mean ownership in other areas.

“On the commercial side, whoever owns AI will also own the industrial revolution that dramatically reduces the amount of humans necessary to do more jobs,” Issa said. “But they will also control the amount of people who are hired to be part of this innovation.”

The global leader in AI will also lead in the weapons system, he said, but defenses have to be as strong as the offenses.

 

So, Who Is the Leader?

The panelists, however, including representatives from the White House, trade associations and more, were quick to note that the race for leadership is not a zero-sum game.

“I would not agree that one nation is leading and someday you declare a victory and everybody else is a loser,” said Dr. Lynne Parker, deputy CTO for the United States, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy. “Everyone can benefit from the advantages of artificial intelligence.”

A nation that is leading in the field of AI is one that is open to innovation and the ability to safely, transparently and ethically use AI.

Policies in AI should also ensure that there are safeguards for government and private-sector use of AI alike, said Michael Beckerman, president and CEO of the Internet Association.

More important, consumer trust will be needed for AI deployments to succeed.

“When we are thinking about scaling [AI], it’s making sure that you have the proper governance and responsible oversight within an organization,” said Addie Cooke, North American AI policy lead at Accenture. “You can’t succeed with scaling AI unless you have consumer and citizen trust.”

 

Why Join the Race?

Cooke noted that AI is an alpha trend, with exponential growth compared to many other technology trends that companies should be keeping up with.

AI has been improving both our everyday lives and industries as a whole. From making personalized music playlist recommendations and determining the best travel route to helping diagnose cancers and make safer self-driving technologies, AI has shown itself to be beneficial in many capacities. The understanding and regulation of what AI enables will allow it to continue enhancing efficiencies.

For smaller companies, AI applications in the cloud can be a way to scale deployments. Smaller companies will be able to compete in global marketplaces, acting like a larger company, by using AI cloud technologies to scale on demand.

Svetlana Matt, legislative assistant of the Office of Rep. McNerney, highlighted that U.S. Congress and tech leaders must step up and prepare the future workforce for jobs that will be created by AI and make sure to help workers whose jobs and skills may also be displaced by automation.

As an emerging significant technology that continues to progress, AI is an area where tech leaders will want to join in early to tackle societal issues, bias and developments to steer the industry in the right direction.


Watch the full session on the “Global Race for Leadership in AI.”

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