Until recently, “artificial intelligence” sounded like something out of science fiction. But the technology of artificial intelligence, AI, is becoming increasingly common, from self-driving cars to e-commerce algorithms that seem to know what you want to buy before you do. Throughout the economy and many aspects of daily life, artificial intelligence has become the transformative technology of our time.
Despite its current and potential benefits, AI is little understood by the larger public and widely feared. The rapid growth of artificial intelligence has given rise to concerns that hidden technology will create a dystopian world of increased income inequality, a total lack of privacy, and perhaps a broad threat to humanity itself.
In their compelling and readable book, two experts at Brookings discuss both the opportunities and risks posed by artificial intelligence—and how near-term policy decisions could determine whether the technology leads to utopia or dystopia.
Drawing on in-depth studies of major uses of AI, the authors detail how the technology actually works. They outline a policy and governance blueprint for gaining the benefits of artificial intelligence while minimizing its potential downsides.
The book offers major recommendations for actions that governments, businesses, and individuals can take to promote trustworthy and responsible artificial intelligence. Their recommendations include: creation of ethical principles, strengthening government oversight, defining corporate culpability, establishment of advisory boards at federal agencies, using third-party audits to reduce biases inherent in algorithms, tightening personal privacy requirements, using insurance to mitigate exposure to AI risks, broadening decision-making about AI uses and procedures, penalizing malicious uses of new technologies, and taking pro-active steps to address how artificial intelligence affects the workforce.
Turning Point is essential reading for anyone concerned about how artificial intelligence works and what can be done to ensure its benefits outweigh its harm.
About the author
Darrell M. West is vice president and director of Governance Studies at the Brookings Institution and holds the Douglas Dillon Chair. He is the director of the Center for Technology Innovation at Brookings and is editor-in-chief of its TechTank blog. He is the author of The Future of Work: Robots, AI, and Automation (Brookings), among other books.
John R. Allen is president of the Brookings Institution. He is a retired U.S. Marine Corps four-star general and former commander of the NATO International Security Assistance Force and U.S. Forces in Afghanistan. He is co-author of Hyperwar: Conflict and Competition in the AI Century.