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The Bletchley Declaration: Shaping the Future of AI Together

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming the world, offering unparalleled opportunities to enhance human well-being, peace and prosperity. It holds the potential promises to revolutionise housing, employment, education, health, and more, while also addressing food security, clean energy, biodiversity, and climate change in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

However, these remarkable advancements come with a host of challenges and concerns that require a concerted effort from the global community. Recognising this, governments from around the world have jointly issued a statement – the Bletchley Declaration – addressing the safety of artificial intelligence (AI).

The statement acknowledges AI’s potential and risks, particularly with this powerful but poorly understood frontier. It commits to inclusive international cooperation to address AI safety concerns, proposing measures like ethical standards, transparency, safety testing, and public education. Additionally, it supports an international research network focused on frontier AI safety, contributing to policymaking and broader international AI discussions.

The Bletchley Declaration underscores the imperative of developing safe, human-centric, and responsible AI to protect human rights and promote widespread benefits and rests on five fundamental points:

Emphasising the Need for Safe and Responsible AI: The statement underscores the importance of developing AI that is safe, human-centric, trustworthy, and responsible, with a focus on safeguarding human rights and ensuring broad benefits.

Acknowledging Opportunities and Risks: The statement acknowledges the vast potential and associated risks of AI, particularly in the case of frontier AI, which possesses potent and potentially hazardous capabilities that remain poorly understood and unpredictable.

Committing to Inclusive Cooperation: The statement commits to collaborative efforts among nations and stakeholders, advocating for inclusive cooperation to address AI safety risks. This collaboration will occur through existing international platforms and other relevant initiatives.

Proposing Measures for AI Safety: The statement suggests various measures to ensure AI safety, including the establishment of ethical standards, transparency, and accountability, rigorous safety testing and evaluation procedures, as well as raising public awareness and promoting education on AI-related matters.

Supporting International Research: The statement endorses the creation of an internationally inclusive network of scientific research focused on frontier AI safety. This research will provide valuable insights for policymaking and the public good, while also contributing to broader international dialogues surrounding AI.

While AI holds immense promise in transforming various aspects of life, for the greater good, AI must be designed, developed, deployed, and used in a manner that prioritises safety and a human-centric approach.

International cooperation is essential to address the global risks associated with AI. Nations should collaborate inclusively to develop trustworthy and safe AI. This requires adopting pro-innovation regulatory approaches and common principles and codes of conduct to balance AI’s benefits with risk mitigation.

The responsibility for AI safety extends to all stakeholders, including nations, international organisations, companies, civil society, and academia. Inclusivity and bridging the digital divide are essential to ensuring that AI benefits everyone, including developing countries. Commitment to this mission must remain steadfast as only by working together, can the world ensure that AI continues to benefit humanity while mitigating potential risks.

OpenGov Asia reported that India has agreed to the Bletchley Declaration, which acknowledges the significance of aligning global artificial intelligence systems with human intentions and advocates for a more thorough exploration of AI’s capabilities. According to India’s Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, India, as the chair of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI), has assumed a leading role in the field of AI, “We have maintained that AI should be guided by principles of safety and trust for users, and accountability for platforms.”


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