BRUSSELS – Businesses using artificial intelligence solutions will soon need to implement accountabiltiy measures to prevent misuse, in line with new ethical guidelines for artificial intelligence updated by the European Commission on Monday.

Outlining seven essential principles for implementing ‘trustworthy AI’, the Commission demanded that AI projects comply with the following:

  • Human agency and oversight – AI systems should not “decrease, limit, or misguide human autonomy”, instead supporting human agency and fundamental rights
  • Robustness and safety – algorithms should be reliable, robust, and secure enough to mitigate errors or inconsistencies through the lifecycle of an AI system
  • Privacy and data governance – citizens need full control over their own data, which organisations must not use to discriminate against them
  • Transparency – AI systems should ensure ‘traceability’
  • Diversity and non-discrimination – AI systems and datasets should consider the whole range of “human abilities, skills, and requirements”
  • Societal and environmental wellbeing – AI systems should be used to enhance positive social change, sustainability, and ecological responsibility
  • Accountability – AI systems should include mechanisms to ensure responsibility and accountability for AI decisionmaking

“Today, we are taking an important step towards ethical and secure AI in the EU,” said Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Mariya Gabriel.

“We now have a solid foundation based on EU values and following an extensive and constructive engagement from many stakeholders including businesses, academia, and civil society. We will now put these requirements to practice and at the same time foster an international discussion on human-centric AI.”

Following the release of these ethical guidelines, the Commission will conduct a pilot phase this summer through the European AI Alliance. This pilot phase will act as an opportunity to finely-tune the guidelines for EU Member States, with an eye to building an international consensus worldwide around ethical AI.


Additional reporting: Reuters