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Citibeats Pioneering the European Union AI Act for trustworthy and ethical Artificial Intelligence

European Building with the european union blue flag with yellow stars

The Artificial Intelligence Act

Some of you might have heard about the so-called EU AI Act, the Artificial Intelligence Act proposal presented last 21 April 2021.

As the dedicated website explains, the AI Act by the European Commission aims to introduce a common regulatory and legal framework for artificial intelligence. “The law assigns applications of AI to three risk categories. First, applications and systems that create an unacceptable risk, such as government-run social scoring of the type used in China, are banned. Second, high-risk applications, such as a CV-scanning tool that ranks job applicants, are subject to specific legal requirements. Lastly, applications not explicitly banned or listed as high-risk are largely left unregulated.”

Why It Matters

AI has gone from a science-fiction invention to a decisive part of our lives, encompassing many different aspects of our day-to-day. AI is now used in many fields, from diagnosing and treatment of cancer to supporting enforcement laws, from giving customers shopping advice based on their preferences to helping you find a restaurant or even the partner of your file.

When a technology becomes so pervasive, it is necessary to create a legal and ethical framework within which that technology (and those who design it) must operate.

Given the full impact of AI on our lives, and in an effort to make that impact more positive rather than negative, the EU AI Act was, to me, an absolute necessity. 

The recent EU AIA (European Union’s draft for Artificial Intelligence Act) is the world’s first attempt to implement horizontal regulation of AI systems and, very likely, it will become the de facto standard setter globally, just like it happened in 2018 for the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR).

Citibeats Pioneering the European Union AI Act

The goal of this rather-longer-than-the-usual newsletter is to share with you a huge milestone for Citiebeats. Actually, I am proud to announce that Citibeats is pioneering the European Union AI Act worldwide with the implementation of a governance process - thanks to our partnership with Enzai Technologies - compliant with the AI Act requirements.

There are many clear advantages to implementing such a governance process. Firstly, it goes beyond ‘responsible AI’ rhetoric and translates illusive ethical principles into tangible criteria which can be used to verify whether a system aligns with fundamental European values and rights. 

This was a necessary step that further confirms our commitment to the creation of a new trustworthy and transparent AI paradigm, as certified by the Ethical AI Community initiative that we launched last August 2022 and that was presented to the world at the end of November 2022 during the Ethical AI Community - Building a Better Society from Barcelona to the World event. 

In the above-mentioned article you can find a detailed explanation of how, thanks to Enzai, Citibeats has been able to establish robust and effective governance controls, to accelerate the development of safe and trustworthy AI. The Enzai platform has allowed Citibeats to benchmark its systems against emerging regulations, along with international policies, standards, and frameworks. 

Just to give you an example, after an important compliance review, we generated three key governance outputs as a result of this evaluation process:

  1. An internal review protocol, which provides it with a well-defined governance framework for quality assurance and risk management along with the relevant technical documentation;
  2. A summary datasheet; and
  3. A model card, which may be distributed to customers and stakeholders as evidence of good practice and conscious management of ethical issues. 

Toward a Safe and Trustworthy AI

Analysts currently expect the EU AIA to come into force towards the end of 2024, and ethically focused businesses are now keen to get a head start. Many of the requirements under the act, such as the obligation to establish a risk management system and keep technical documentation, make sense regardless of the regulatory imperative. As the AI space matures, these controls will become essential for any organization building AI.

For Citibeats, embracing the European Union’s proposals for regulating AI technologies is a key milestone on our journey towards safe and trustworthy AI.

I feel we are witness of a historical moment for the whole industry and now more than ever I can say that Citibeas is having a leading role in writing a new chapter of AI by embedding ethics into the very core of the AI design and application process.

Citibeats leverages ethical AI for social understanding. Gathering and analyzing unstructured data from social media comments, blog posts, forums, and more, our Sustainability and Social Risk Monitors provide insight into millions of unfolding conversations regarding inflation, protests, food shortages, and more—empowering world leaders to develop data-driven strategies and inclusive policies. 

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