European Commission launches pilot stage of trustworthy AI assessment guidelines

July 2, 2019

The European Commission has just launched the pilot phase of the ethics guidelines for trustworthy AI, as the High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence released its policy recommendations.

The High-Level Expert Group on AI has announced two important developments: the piloting phase of the ethics guidelines for trustworthy AI; and policy and investment recommendations for trustworthy AI in Europe.

Piloting phase of the ethics guidelines for trustworthy AI

Organisations can test the assessment list for trustworthy artificial intelligence and see how robust it is in practice. An online survey has been created to gather feedback on the assessment list and closes on 1 December 2019. Best practice examples for assessing the trustworthiness of AI can also be shared through the European AI Alliance.

The expert group will also carry out in-depth interviews with selected representatives from the public and private sectors to better understand the implications of implementing the assessment list in different sectors. 

The interviews and the feedback from the piloting survey will feed into a revised version of the assessment list, to be presented in early 2020, and will influence the next steps to be taken by the new European Commission.

Policy and investment recommendations for trustworthy AI in Europe

The expert group has also presented 33 recommendations with a focus on ensuring sustainability, growth, competitiveness and inclusion while empowering, benefiting and protecting individuals. 

The recommendations call on EU and national policymakers to:

  • Empower and protect humans and society: ensure individuals understand the capabilities, limitations and impacts of AI; protect them from any harm; and provide them with the necessary skills to use and benefit from AI.
  • Take up a tailored approach to the AI market: assess the different needs and sensitivities raised by AI systems used in business-to-consumers, business-to-business and public-to-citizens contexts, and address these accordingly. 
  • Secure a single European market for trustworthy AI: remove barriers to procure lawful, ethical and robust AI-enabled goods and services from all over Europe, while enabling a competitive global position through large integrated markets.
  • Enable AI ecosystems through sectoral multi-stakeholder alliances: boost stakeholder cooperation across civil society, industry, the public sector and research and academia, while understanding the different impacts and enablers for different sectors.
  • Foster the European data economy: further advance policy actions in data access, sharing, reusing and interoperability, while ensuring high privacy and data protection, and putting in place the necessary physical infrastructures.
  • Exploit the multi-faceted role of the public sector: ensure the public sector leads by example by delivering human-centric public services, making strategic use of innovation-driven public procurement, and fostering cooperation with stakeholders.
  • Strengthen and unite Europe’s research capabilities: establish and demonstrate intellectual and commercial leadership in AI by bringing together European research capacity in a multidisciplinary manner.
  • Nurture education: ensure a wide skills base through primary, secondary and tertiary education, as well as enabling continuous learning and strive towards a work-life-train balance.
  • Adopt a risk-based governance approach to AI and ensure an appropriate regulatory framework: map relevant laws, assess to which extent these are still fit for purpose in an AI-driven world, and adopt new measures where needed to protect individuals from harm, with the aim of contributing to an appropriate governance and regulatory framework for AI.
  • Stimulate an open and lucrative investment environment: enhance investment levels in AI with both public and private support.
  • Embrace a holistic way of working, combining a ten year vision with a rolling action plan: look at AI’s overall opportunities and challenges for the next ten years, while continuously monitoring the AI landscape and adapting actions on a rolling basis as needed; join forces with all stakeholders for the concrete implementation of the ethics guidelines and policy recommendations.