February 22, 2024

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New Zealand to Set Ethical Artificial Intelligence Strategy

New Zealand is developing an approach to supporting the ethical adoption of AI — one that is focused on building an AI ecosystem on a foundation of trust, equity and accessibility right from the onset.

A crucial part of this approach is to involve key stakeholders in the planning. And that is exactly the reason why the government has designed the system so every New Zealander and every technology expert who matters can contribute.

The success of this ITP requires us to form a consensus view on the scope of our ambition and how this can be achieved with actions and initiatives that are sufficiently realistic to bring about meaningful change – both short and longer-term.

– David Clark, Minister for the Digital Economy and Communications

Wellington published a draft that should jumpstart its pursuit of an ethical AI ecosystem:  the Industry Transformation Plan (ITP) which covers its overall digital transformation road map. Its goal is to support the continued growth of the country’s technology sector. More importantly, the government is allowing New Zealanders and those in the private and public sectors to contribute. Now, it awaits feedback from the industry and other parties to refine the action plan.

The ITP outlines key areas that need to be targeted. Some of these areas are:

  • increasing its digital technologies exporters
  • developing its digital skills and talent pipeline
  • creating a SaaS community
  • and building Māori participation in the tech sector.

The new AI strategy is part of this plan and is structured around five cornerstones including:

  • AI must be a trusted technology.
  • AI use should come from a clear understanding of the benefits and implications of the technology.
  • Safeguards are in place to mitigate AI risk.

Future gains when it comes to an ethical AI strategy has been cited. For instance, ITP also highlighted that the AI economy will drive investment into the country and position it as a society for the future. The draft plan underlined that AI will have an impact on the country’s workforce and productivity. It is imperative that policymakers understand the implications of the technology on citizens and equip workers with the necessary digital skills to be a part of the AI economy.

The initial plan further mentioned that the goal is to position New Zealand businesses as internationally recognised as developers of safe, innovative, and creative AI, and for the country to be a trusted and willing partner in the planet’s push for AI technology. To that end, the AI ecosystem will need a set of solid foundations (e.g., proper governance arrangements, digital infrastructure).

New Zealand is willing to pull all the stops to get its digital transformation going. Wellington is considering whether to establish a Centre for AI to provide an independent and visible focal point to grow an understanding of AI and other data-driven technologies. This would help domestic and international colleagues engage with each other and help them understand the complex nature of AI and the risks it poses.

The plan is getting needed feedback as we speak. The New Zealand government is seeking feedback not only from the industry but also from other interested parties to refine the action plan.

After every bit of feedback is sorted, the creation of a final ITP that will address short and long-term opportunities and challenges for the sector should follow. The Ministry of Business, Innovation, and Employment (MBIE) invite interested parties to make a submission by 31 March 2022, as reported on OpenGov Asia.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

PARTNER

Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

PARTNER

HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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