First draft for AI ethics framed

First draft for AI ethics framed

AI ethics guidelines drafted. (Bangkok Post file photo)
AI ethics guidelines drafted. (Bangkok Post file photo)

A six-pronged draft for the country's first artificial intelligence (AI) ethics guidelines has been rolled out, says the Digital Economy and Society (DES) Ministry.

The DES Ministry worked with Microsoft Thailand and Mahidol University on the guidelines. Thailand is the first country in Asia-Pacific where Microsoft contributed to crafting the guidelines as an adviser.

The first principle indicates AI technology must cater to the country's competitiveness and sustainable development.

The technology also needs to comply with the law and international standards.

AI technology must be developed with accountability and responsibility to ensure security and data protection.

Other tenets are the technology must take into account equality and fairness, and efforts must be made to ensure AI technology is reliable.

The draft is not final and the ministry wants to gather input from public forums and focus groups. No timeline has been set for when the draft will be made regulation.

"The AI ethics guideline is part of raising competitiveness under the 20-year national strategy plan for 2018-37, which was made by the national strategy committee," said Buddhipongse Punnakanta, the DES minister.

The guideline will serve as practices to be followed by researchers, developers and service providers engaging in tech development, he said.

AI is expected to be broadly used by targeted industries under the Thailand 4.0 initiative, including for S-curve industries.

These industries include next-generation automation, intelligent electronics, medical tourism, advanced agriculture and biotech, food processing, robotics, comprehensive healthcare, aviation, logistics, biofuel, biochemical and digital industries.

"AI will not only be used in the manufacturing sector, but also in normal daily life, including work and leisure," said Mr Buddhipongse.

He said the guideline is needed to prevent misuse of technology.

"I think the guidelines and practice should be developed into regulation," said Mr Buddhipongse.

It is too early to say when the guidelines will come into force, he said.

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