The National Science Foundation to invest $140M to build seven National AI Research Institutes

By: Sharjeel Sohaib

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May 27, 2023

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  • The National Science Foundation is investing $140 million to establish seven new National AI Research Institutes, promoting responsible AI research and development across critical areas.
  • Leading AI developers, including Alphabet, Anthropic, Microsoft, and OpenAI, are committing to publicly assessing their AI systems.
  • The Office of Management and Budget will release draft policy guidance on the use of AI systems by the U.S. government, focusing on safeguarding citizens’ rights and safety.

The Biden Administration is taking significant steps to foster responsible and ethical innovation in artificial intelligence (AI) while prioritizing protecting people’s rights and safety. With a focus on placing individuals and communities at the forefront, the administration aims to harness the potential of AI while mitigating its associated risks.Β 

By engaging with industry leaders, advocating responsible practices, and implementing robust policies, the government is taking a comprehensive approach to addressing AI-related challenges and opportunities.

Promoting Responsible AI Research and Development

To bolster American AI research and development (R&D), the National Science Foundation is investing $140 million to establish seven new National AI Research Institutes. These institutes work in collaboration with academic institutions and federal agencies that will help drive transformative advancements in AI while upholding ethical and responsible practices. Covering areas like climate, agriculture, energy, public health, education, and cybersecurity, these institutes also contribute to the diversification of the AI workforce, ensuring a broad range of perspectives and talents.

Public Assessments of AI Systems

Leading AI developers, including Alphabet, Anthropic, Microsoft, and OpenAI, are committing to public evaluations of their AI systems. By participating in an independent assessment on a dedicated platform, these developers will allow thousands of community partners and AI experts to evaluate their systems rigorously. 

This initiative aligns with the Biden-Harris Administration’s Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights and AI Risk Management Framework, ensuring transparency, accountability, and issues identification. The evaluation process conducted independently from the government or the companies involved is crucial in effectively assessing AI models.

Government Policies for Mitigating Risks and Harnessing Opportunities

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) is set to release draft policy guidance on the use of AI systems by the U.S. government. This guidance will provide specific policies for federal departments and agencies, emphasizing protecting citizens’ rights and safety throughout AI systems’ development, procurement, and utilization.Β 

By leading by example, the government aims to ensure equitable service delivery and advance its missions responsibly. The OMB will seek public comments on the draft guidance, enabling input from various stakeholders, including advocates, civil society, and industry, before finalizing the policies.

Conclusion

The Biden-Harris Administration is committed to fostering responsible and ethical AI innovation that safeguards the rights and safety of Americans. By promoting responsible AI research and development through National AI Research Institutes, the administration seeks breakthroughs in critical areas while nurturing a diverse AI workforce. 

The commitment of leading AI developers to public assessments demonstrates transparency and accountability in line with the administration’s principles. Additionally, the government’s forthcoming policy guidance for using AI systems sets a precedent for responsible AI adoption across federal departments and agencies. These initiatives will help the administration to develop a cohesive and comprehensive approach to AI-related risks and opportunities.

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