Understanding what form regulations on AI should take – in South Africa and elsewhere – is complicated for three reasons: the nature of modern AI, the sociopolitical context in which regulations are being made, and the nature of the risks involved, writes the author.
As lawmakers across the world scramble to regulate advanced artificial intelligence systems, South Africa could play a vital role in shaping the course by engaging directly with the private labs responsible for their development, in addition to making use of the usual regulatory routes, writes Tharin Pillay.
Advanced artificial intelligence systems are among the most important inventions of our time. As a general-purpose technology akin to electricity, they are poised to transform every sector of the global economy, from healthcare to education to agriculture.
In particular, the release of ChatGPT just over a year ago has catalysed policymakers across the world, who recognise the urgent need to regulate this technology so that its benefits can be maximised while its risks are constrained.
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