The New Zealand Government and the World Economic Forum are co-sponsoring a project to re-imagine regulation in the age of AI and consider approaches to regulation.
The initiative is closely tied to the cross-government work of the Government chief digital officer (GCDO) in ensuring all New Zealanders can thrive in a digital age and will bring a New Zealand perspective to a global discussion.
“AI can offer huge benefits, but it also brings fresh challenges," said GCDO Paul James.
"It needs to be implemented in a way that is transparent and with appropriate safe-guards in place to ensure public confidence."
"The Government had a role, alongside other agencies, in protecting New Zealanders’ digital rights and their well-being, he said.
"The Te Ao Māori worldview gives New Zealand a unique perspective to approaching some of the problems in the AI space.”
On 30 October over 50 guests including AI experts, business, civil society, Māoridom and academia attended a workshop in Wellington to start a national conversation and discuss New Zealand’s role.
Participants discussed key themes of AI such as incorporating trust and empathy, ensuring transparent use, and ensuring all voices are considered in its design and implementation.
The project will support the development of a road-map for policymakers on AI regulation including a set of approaches and tools for responsive rules.
“As we develop new regulatory systems for AI, we must be clear about the obligations, but the rules must also be flexible and innovative," said Lofred Madzou, WEF project lead.
"Good regulation will encourage business confidence and consumer safety without stopping innovation.”