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Director of the National AI Initiative Office Shares the Administration's AI Priorities and Concerns

Director of the National AI Initiative Office Shares the Administration's AI Priorities and Concerns

Dr. Lynne Parker, Director of the National AI Initiative Office in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), spoke at the Fortune Brainstorm AI conference last week, discussing the administration’s AI priorities. She also shared how the U.S. can follow the EU’s approach to AI regulations and why the U.S. should lead the world in the responsible use of AI, especially as nations like China continue to pursue the technology.


Dr. Parker discussed the EU’s all-encompassing approach to AI regulation and its warnings against a piecemeal approach that could inhibit innovation. Thoughtful regulations can encourage further innovation in AI as they can help ensure safety and increase trustworthiness, both major priorities of the administration. Dr. Parker also mentioned that the trustworthiness of AI may be in jeopardy if non-democratic nations like China advance the technology more quickly than democratic nations.


“When it comes to the responsible use of AI, there are a lot of concerns about many of the use cases that authoritarian countries, including China, are demonstrating,” said Dr. Parker during the conference. “Obviously, we don’t want to use technology in order to repress people or to suppress opinions and so forth. That’s why this administration has been very firmly behind the idea of how we can build up technologies that affirm democracies.”


She shared that China’s main advantage in the space is the massive amount of data the state has to build on and suggested that greater international collaboration may be the key to ensuring safety and trustworthiness of AI in the face of China’s growing dominance. “If we can have more and more use of technologies like privacy-enhancing technologies and use these in cooperation with like-minded democracies from around the world, then we’ll be better able to compete in domains where our competitors don’t necessarily have any guardrails to drive their work,” commented Dr. Parker.


The National AI Initiative Office is currently reviewing nominations for the inaugural National Artificial Intelligence Advisory Committee (NIAIAC). The NIAIAC is mandated in the 2020 National AI Initiative Act and directs the committee to provide recommendations on topics related to AI competitiveness.

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