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USA: Senate AI Working Group publishes AI Roadmap

On May 15, 2024, the Bipartisan Senate AI Working Group published a roadmap entitled 'Driving U.S. Innovation in Artificial Intelligence: A Roadmap for Artificial Intelligence Policy in the United States Senate.' In particular, the Roadmap highlights policy priorities to inform the consideration of bipartisan artificial intelligence (AI) legislation.

What are the main recommendations?

Specifically, the Working Group highlights the need to enforce existing legislation on consumer protection and civil rights, particularly with regard to 'black box' AI systems, noting that the opaque nature of some AI systems may be unacceptable under US law. Accordingly, the Roadmap encourages the development of legislative language to fill transparency gaps, giving access to information directly relevant to enforcing existing laws and, if necessary, placing appropriate case-by-case requirements around transparency and explainability.

More specifically, the Working Group recommends the consideration of the need to have a human in the loop at certain stages for some high-impact tasks when developing AI legislation. Likewise, when datasets contain sensitive personal data or are protected by copyright, the Working Group outlines that policymakers should evaluate the need for transparency requirements. In the employment context, the Working Group details that policymakers should review the degree of transparency with which federal agencies inform employees about the development and deployment of AI in the workplace.

In addition, the Working Group encourages policymakers to consider the need for additional standards, or clarify existing standards, on holding AI developers and deployers to account if their products cause harm to consumers, as well as how to enforce such standards.

Notably, the Working Group also notes its support for a strong comprehensive federal privacy law to protect personal information, and that such legislation should address data minimization, data security, consumer rights, consent, disclosure, and data brokers.

On other specific legislative recommendations, the Working Group also asks that policymakers consider legislation to address online child sexual abuse material (CSAM) and legislation to ban the use of AI for social scoring, alongside whether other potential uses of AI should be extremely limited or banned.

You can read the press release here and the Roadmap here.