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UN AI report to close gaps in government responses

An interim artificial intelligence report by the United Nations will lead governments and the private sector to think more about governance, risks and opportunities, tech envoy Amandeep Singh Gill told Reuters.

The U.N. last week created a 39-member advisory body to address issues in the international governance of AI. The body expects to submit a preliminary report by the end of this year and a final one next year.

“We need to examine the landscape of existing governance responses across borders, and then see where the gaps are and how we can connect the governance responses together so that there are no gaps,” Gill said.

Gill, appointed by U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres as tech envoy last year, is tasked with coordination across the U.N. on tech issues, ranging from AI to neural technologies.

Regulators and lawmakers are grappling with the rapidly evolving technologies.

The Group of Seven (G7) industrial countries has agreed on a code of conduct for companies developing advanced AI. Europe is close to agreeing new AI rules while U.S. President Joe Biden issued a new executive order on AI on Monday.

British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak will also host the world’s first global AI safety summit this week.

The recommendations of the AI advisory body will be discussed during a U.N. summit to be held in September next year.

Guterres had in June backed a proposal by some AI executives for the creation of an international AI watchdog body like the International Atomic Energy Agency.

The U.N. provides the avenue for national jurisdictions to come together and discuss how standards are being applied, or if they need to be updated, Gill said.

The AI body, co-chaired by Spanish digital minister Carme Artigas and Alphabet’s James Manyika, will have at least three in-person meetings and several virtual meetings. Reuters

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