What rules should economists, researchers, politicians, and society follow for embracing AI?

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Artificial intelligence will fundamentally change our current way of life. Technical progress hasn’t just excited many, but also frightened many. What will our economy and social coexistence look like in the coming years?

Experts around the world are addressing this issue, but it’s hard to pin down a precise forecast.
So that we don’t get lost on the way to the future, the German Federal Association of Digital Economics (BVDW) has developed a navigator with eight guidelines.

Trust is everything!

About 600 companies are working with the BVDW. All of the companies have a business model with a focus on digital technology. Besides large companies and industry leaders such as SAP, Deutsche Telekom, BMW, and Google, dotSource is also a member of the association.

In the newly published document »Eight Guidelines for Artificial Intelligence«, the BVDW now wants to establish codes of conduct for the long-term use of the artificial intelligence in economics, research, politics, and society. In a balanced relationship of all interests, transparency, improved communication, and public relations, as well as the associated build-up of trust, should make Germany a pioneer in AI.

Experts from 25 working groups of the BVDW have agreed on the following guidelines:

» AI is a competitive economic factor – as a key technology, the digital industry will involve AI in the development of new business models. For this purpose, companies in the association have to identify concrete fields of application for AI. «

» AI is helping solve social issues – the association will accompany and moderate this necessary discourse. For this, the economy, politics, and society must be equated and included in the discourse. «

» The European digital economy needs to be cohesive in order to not be left behind – the implementation of AI requires a Europe-wide mindset. For the European Union to be able to act fully, Germany must lead the way as a strong member of the EU. «

» Citizens’ autonomy and freedom of choice must be ensured in order to build trust – the digital association has a duty to gear its data-driven models to it. Therefore, it must become clear which data is used by an AI and with which intention. «

» AI has the potential to disrupt the economy – for its breakthrough, the clarification of ethical policy issues is a mandatory requirement. This requires the development of clear guidelines for society as a whole. «

» A breakthrough in AI will change the job market – the digital economy will use AI to establish new roles in the job market. This requires greater flexibility in the job market. «

» The establishment of qualified AI professionals in Germany and Europe has priority – the digital economy is contributing to the appropriate framework with its part. In addition, existing training and continuing education opportunities must be adapted and made more flexible. «

» Data are the drivers of AI – the digital economy is committed to providing appropriate regulatory frameworks to enable the implementation of AI on a broad basis. Data sets need to be opened to make data usable and thus help AI breakthrough. «

A detailed explanation of the approaches can be found in this document (German only) from the BVDW.

The AI Hippocratic Oath

For many centuries, doctors have had to swear by their ethical actions. Even judges, federal officials, juries, and presidents know what it’s like to take an oath before starting their roles. Today, this routine is more symbolic, since this tradition isn’t legally binding in Germany.

But people associate oaths with trust and security. Maybe AI developers should take an oath and swear to do only good with this technology?

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