UN discussion on AI: Could this create an AI watchdog?

With AI increasing in global relevance, it will be important for there to be international collaboration to prevent continued increases in fraud, ransomware and cyber attacks and even surveillance operations
The UN is set to discuss AI and its impact on global businesses and governments and if further regulations need to be enforced to ensure responsible use

The United Nations (UN) Security Council is set to hold its first formal discussion on AI in New York. 

As part of this, the UK is supposedly set to call for an international dialogue about the impact of AI on global peace and security, as reported by Reuters. 

AI is being used increasingly in a wide variety of business sectors and use is only expected to rise. It is already being used frequently within tech, financial, healthcare and retail sectors, to name a few. The UN has always advocated for the responsible use of AI and this conversation could see further regulations and guidelines be put in place moving forward.

A turning point in AI: Hope for an open international dialogue

With AI increasing in global relevance, it will be important for there to be international collaboration to prevent continued increases in fraud, ransomware and cyber attacks and even surveillance operations.

Cross-industry experts have already joined forces with the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to call for the establishment of an international AI watchdog. At the time, Guterres cited possible risks associated with generative AI and announced plans to establish an AI advisory body to actively review and assess AI governance arrangements. 

Indeed, it is important that organisations and governments are provided with recommendations on how to align AI with legalities. There are already concerns that AI could negatively impact human rights, with The Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) having already raised concerns regarding the UK’s plans for AI.

AI Magazine has previously reported on this, as well as recognising that without robust frameworks to protect users and keep human workers and users safe, AI systems risk perpetuating biases and increasing cyber concerns.

Governments around the world are already considering how to best mitigate the dangers of AI technology. These efforts are already changing the international security landscape, with a recent report forecasting that the global AI market is expected to reach US$1.8tn by 2030 with a CAGR of 37.3%. The report speaks to the impact that AI has had on businesses in terms of stronger accessibility and growth and how businesses are working to implement automated solutions.

The UK holds the rotating presidency of the UN Security Council in July 2023 and has been seeking a global leadership role in AI regulation. UK Foreign Secretary James Cleverly will lead the upcoming UN discussion and speak on the impact of AI on the global economy.

Also to partake in the conversation are António Guterres, Jack Clark, co-founder of leading AI company Anthropic, and Professor Yi Zeng, Director of the Brain-inspired Cognitive Intelligence Lab and co-Director of the China-UK Research Center for AI Ethics and Governance.


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