Brookings – CEPS
Recognizing the strategic, economic, and social significance of artificial intelligence (AI), numerous governments have adopted strategies to meet the challenges and opportunities of this technology. Originally focused on industrial competitiveness and investment in research and innovation, policymakers are also assessing the risks of AI for fundamental rights and safety. The pursuit of responsible AI—AI that is ethical, trustworthy, and reliable—is increasingly central to many governments’ AI policy, a focus for AI research and development, and a concern for civil society eager to maximize the opportunities of AI while mitigating its risks. These issues transcend national boundaries. As a result, international cooperation on AI policy and development has become an important element of national policies and a focus for international bodies. In 2019, The Brookings Institution and the Centre for European Policy Studies (CEPS) saw a need for deeper exploration of international cooperation in AI development and policymaking and established the Forum for Cooperation on AI (FCAI), a high-level exchange among government officials and leading experts from academia, the private sector, and civil society. Beginning as a transatlantic dialogue among Canada, the EU, the U.K. and the U.S., FCAI expanded to encompass Australia, Japan, and Singapore, and convened eight roundtables among officials and experts over a 12-month period since June 2020. In addition to group discussions, the authors conducted numerous interviews with individual participants as well as research on developments in artificial intelligence and international AI policy. The seven governments involved are global leaders in AI policy development and investment and are linked by trade, security interests, and common democratic values. Together, they represent almost 50 percent of global GDP and contain the majority of the world’s research, talent, and commerce in AI. All have been involved in international discussions of cooperation. This progress report outlines the preliminary findings and recommendations of the FCAI on ways to build on these discussions and enhance international cooperation toward responsible AI that harnesses the benefits and manages the risks for humanity. The report identifies concrete steps that would benefit international cooperation, as well as subjects that will be explored by FCAI in greater depth over the coming months.