With last week seeing the Council of Europe under its now incumbent Czech Presidency focusing on AI and the Digital Identity, the United Kingdom has taken the lead in AI regulation through the publication of its first AI Action Plan with the aim of actioning the UK’s National AI strategy.
UK takes the lead on balancing AI regulation with innovation
With the British government focusing on the future of the country’s Deep Tech ecosystem, a series of regulatory moves have seen an enhanced interest in rationalizing and incubating a clear yet business-friendly environment for AI and data-based ventures. The Data Protection and Digital Information Bill, introduced in parallel to the Action Plan, also aims to completely overhaul the way data is handled in the United Kingdom in order to allow for a more business friendly approach. Through balancing the at-times opposing priorities of data privacy and pro-business measures, the government aims for these regulations to clarify the legal regime governing AI while saving businesses £1 billion.
Through the government’s AI Action Plan has also seen more than £2.3 billion invested in AI and related projects, empowering the growth of the local ecosystem when attempting to ensure its longevity through education and capacity building. With funding going towards the provision of up to 2,000 new AI and data management scholarships, efforts are being undertaken to futureproof the next generation of the United Kingdom’s workforce with the contemporary shortage being bridge through the opening of new routes for vista acquisition.
The pillars of tomorrow’s industry: UK’s AI principles
As for the regulatory principles themselves, the regime is built on six fundamental pillars. Beyond this, the regulators themselves have a degree of flexibility when it comes to the implementation of these principles with the main insistence being on a business-friendly approach.
- Ensure that AI is used safely
- Ensure that AI is technically secure and functions as designed
- Make sure that AI is appropriately transparent and explainable
- Consider fairness
- Identify a legal person to be responsible for AI
- Clarify routes to redress or contestability
These being set, regulators such as Ofcom, Competition and Markets Authority, the Information Commissioner’s Office, the Financial Conduct Authority and the Medicine and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency will be requested to interpret these principles within their own jurisdiction and act accordingly.
In terms of official recognition, Digital Minister Damian Collins elaborated that:
We want to make sure the UK has the right rules to empower businesses and protect people as AI and the use of data keeps changing the ways we live and work.
It is vital that our rules offer clarity to businesses, confidence to investors and boost public trust. Our flexible approach will help us shape the future of AI and cement our global position as a science and tech superpower.
From a regulatory perspective, Acting Chair of the AI Council Professor Dame Wendy Hall said:
We welcome these important early steps to establish a clear and coherent approach to regulating AI. This is critical to driving responsible innovation and supporting our AI ecosystem to thrive. The AI Council looks forward to working with the government on the next steps to develop the White Paper.
Join us in Belgrade, Serbia from the 22-25th August:
With the peninsula being known for its natural beauty, rich cultural landscape and fantastic delicacies, the Balkans are renowned for having some of the most quintessentially Mediterranean vistas and experiences. From the Adriatic coastline of Split to the fairytale-esque castle of Lake Bled, the region has a lot to offer the world. This being said, something that fewer may know is the fact that the nations of the Balkans are incubating a nascent but powerfully growing technical expertise when it comes to frontier technology such as Blockchain, GameFi, AI and more. Therefore the region may not only be a rich adventure into the past but my also serve as a window into the very near future.
Join us in Belgrade for the best the industry has to offer and for a window into the future of Deep Tech. To learn more about sponsorship and speaking opportunities or to inquire about attending the event, please contact Sophie at [email protected]