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NSW’s AI Assurance Framework to Launch in March

The NSW Government announced that a new Artificial Intelligence Assurance Framework will come into effect in March. The new framework has been designed to allow agencies across the government to ensure increasingly sophisticated AI systems are safe, effective and delivering on state outcomes.

The framework was developed as part of the state government’s AI Strategy, which also included the formation of a dedicated AI Advisory Committee chaired by the NSW Government’s Chief Data Scientist. The committee helped guide the development of the framework.

The framework will ensure government services using AI are easy to access and use by customers as well as being personalised and secure.

“AI creates a huge opportunity to improve government services. We are already piloting the technology with eHealth NSW to help doctors to earlier identify sepsis in patients attending emergency departments,” he said.

The framework lays the foundation for the appropriate use of AI systems, which in turn means new ways of delivering government services in NSW. AI can be used to drive the state’s economy by helping businesses to grow and could solve some of the state’s most complex challenges, from supporting vulnerable residents to detecting fraud in the banking sector.

Coming into effect in March 2022, the NSW AI Assurance Framework assists agencies to design, build and using AI-enabled products and solutions. Consistent with the NSW Government AI Ethics Principles, the Framework is designed to help agencies identify risks that may be associated with their projects.

Who should use it?

From March 2022, the AI Assurance Framework will be required for all projects which contain an AI component, except if:

  • It uses an AI system that is a widely available commercial application, and
  • The solution is not being customised in any way or being used other than intended.

When it should be used?

The AI Assurance Framework is intended to be used at all major points of an AI project’s lifecycle – from start to finish. Project teams should continually assess their projects against the Framework to ensure their project abides by ethical principles.

As a best practice, project leaders and policymakers should review the Framework and consider each of its questions as part of the first steps in any AI project design process, and as part of any review of an existing AI solution.

How to use it? 

Project teams using AI should consider the questions under each of the Framework’s five categories, capturing their responses as they progress. The Framework also requires project teams to make decisions along the way, including decisions on how or if a project should progress.

Project teams will be required to seek approval from a responsible senior officer or submit the completed assessment to the AI Review Body.


This AI Assurance Framework assists project teams using AI to comprehensively analyse and document their projects’ AI-specific risks. It also assists teams to implement risk mitigation strategies and establishing clear governance and accountability measures.

It is part of a suite of materials for guiding the NSW Government in uptake and use of AI solutions:

  • AI Strategy: Outlines a vision for the use of AI in government, supported by clear commitments that will help build maturity and assurance in using this emerging technology.
  • AI Ethics Principles: Sets out the definitions of AI and principles that all agencies deploying AI are required to adhere to.
  • AI Assurance Framework: Provides clear requirements for agencies to design, build and use AI technology ethically and appropriately.
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