As artificial intelligence rapidly evolves, how can the federal government use evidence and data to effectively utilize and oversee this technology?
The field of artificial intelligence (AI) was founded on the idea that algorithms could be developed to simulate human intelligence. AI includes both narrow applications designed for task completion (like online “chatbots” or virtual assistants) and general systems that reason like a human across a range of contexts (such as self-driving cars).
However, AI systems pose unique challenges to accountability, especially as they relate to civil liberties, ethics, and social disparities. While stakeholders are considering using high-level governance principles to ensure that AI technologies can be trusted, there is limited information on how these principles will be implemented and verified.
As AI technologies continue to advance at an incredible speed, federal oversight considerations need to evolve alongside them.
Some questions for policymakers to consider when assessing these technologies include:
- How is the federal government using AI systems? For example, what data and code are used to power these technologies?
- How should AI systems be evaluated? What approaches should auditors take to develop credible assessments?
- What would an evidence-based AI assessment look like?
- What does the future hold for AI oversight?
GAO-20-379SP: Published: Feb 20, 2020. Publicly Released: Feb 20, 2020.
A deepfake is a video, photo, or audio recording that seems real but has been manipulated with artificial intelligence technologies. Deepfakes are usually pornographic and disproportionately victimize women. However, deepfakes can also be used to influence elections or incite civil unrest. Anyone with basic computing skills and a home computer can create a deepfake. Some methods to detect deepfak...
GAO-20-215SP: Published: Dec 20, 2019. Publicly Released: Jan 21, 2020.
Drug companies spend 10 to 15 years bringing a drug to market, often at a high cost. Machine learning could reduce the time and cost by finding new insights in large biomedical or health-related data sets. Machine learning is already used throughout drug development, from discovery to clinical trials. Experts say further advances could be transformative. But a lack of high-quality data hinders it...
GAO-18-644T: Published: Jun 26, 2018. Publicly Released: Jun 26, 2018.
Artificial intelligence (AI) could improve human life and economic competitiveness—but it also poses new risks. The Comptroller General convened a Forum on AI to consider the policy and research implications of AI’s use in 4 areas with the potential to significantly affect daily life: cybersecurity, automated vehicles, criminal justice, and financial services. Based on our March 2018 tec...
GAO-18-142SP: Published: Mar 28, 2018. Publicly Released: Mar 28, 2018.
Artificial intelligence (AI) could improve human life and economic competitiveness—but it also poses new risks. The Comptroller General convened the Forum on AI to consider the policy and research implications of AI’s use in 4 areas with the potential to significantly affect daily life—cybersecurity, automated vehicles, criminal justice, and financial services. The forum highlighted the fac...