5 things to know about artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence has shown its effectiveness in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic
Artificial intelligence is helping slow the economic impact of the crisis through digital platforms. It also helps researchers to compress vast amounts of data in the race to find a vaccine or treatment. Artificial intelligence has helped combat the spread of the virus with testing, tracking and tracing technologies. However, as users provide access to their data, the practice of AI during this pandemic has re-raised concerns about privacy, data protection, and data usage beyond virus tracking needs.
AI-driven economic growth is likely to turn highly unequal
AI is expected to generate approximately $4 trillion in value added by 2022. By 2030, the economic benefits are expected to be greatest in China and North America, which account for 70% of the global economic impact of AI. The winner-takes-all dynamic of AI must be regulated: the concentration of AI systems in the hands of a few high-income countries is likely to leave developing countries behind. The latter will not benefit or benefit very little from artificial intelligence techniques and above all will not suit them.
Only 22% of AI professionals are women
Due to their underrepresentation in the industry, artificial intelligence techniques reproduce gender biases and stereotypes. The fact that virtual personal assistants like Siri, Alexa or Cortana are “female” by default is no accident. The subservience and surrender they sometimes express is an example of how AI can (continue to) reinforce and spread gender bias in our societies.
AI can be a powerful tool to tackle climate change and environmental issues
As the planet continues to warm, the effects of climate change are getting worse. By collecting and analyzing data, AI-powered models, for example, can help improve ecosystem management and restore habitat, which is essential to limiting the decline in fish and wildlife populations. However, data mining consumes nearly 10% of the world’s energy. It is therefore also necessary to address the high energy consumption of AI and the resulting impact on carbon emissions.
AI cannot be a lawless area
Artificial intelligence is already in our lives, and it guides our choices, often in harmful ways. There are legislative loopholes in the sector that must be filled quickly. The first step is to agree on the absolute values that must be guaranteed, as well as the rules that must be applied. Many frameworks and guidelines already exist, but they are not implemented uniformly and none of them are truly universal. Artificial intelligence is global, which is why we need a global tool to regulate it.