Japan to Establish New Regulatory Body for AI Safety; Developing Standards for Generative AI Creators and Other Stakeholders

The Japanese government is set to establish a new organization in January, dedicated to ensuring the safety of artificial intelligence (AI). This move comes in response to the increasing importance of AI in numerous sectors and the need to address potential risks associated with its development and use.

The organization, to be known as the AI Safety Institute, will be housed within the Information-technology Promotion Agency, Japan (IPA) under the jurisdiction of the Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry. It will bring together experts in AI, cyber security, and national security from various sectors, including business, academia, and the public sector. Additionally, central government officials will also be part of the institute’s staff.

The main responsibility of the AI Safety Institute will be to establish a mechanism for evaluating the safety of AI. This will include formulating standards for safety evaluation to be used by companies developing AI and aiding in the development of testing software for use by AI companies. The organization will potentially become an accreditation body if an independent certification system for AI is introduced in the future.

The government’s decision to establish the AI Safety Institute aligns with similar efforts by the U.S. and U.K. governments, reflecting a global commitment to ensuring the safe development and use of AI. The potential for AI to generate false information, invade privacy, and facilitate criminal activities has prompted the need for dedicated organizations to address these risks. The Institute’s work will also involve researching and identifying technologies that can prevent the spread of false information and mitigate other potential risks associated with AI.

The establishment of the AI Safety Institute is expected to play a key role in addressing global concerns about the safety of AI. The Group of Seven (G7) industrialized nations have been engaged in discussions about regulating AI, culminating in the agreement on comprehensive international rules related to AI. These rules emphasize the importance of developers mitigating risks by assessing safety and conducting tests before launching AI products on the market.

In light of the increasing utilization of AI across various industries, the establishment of the AI Safety Institute will be a significant step in ensuring that the development and use of AI prioritize safety and ethical considerations. With Prime Minister Fumio Kishida set to make an official announcement about the new organization, Japan is poised to take a leadership role in the global efforts to ensure the safe and responsible use of AI.

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