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Transparency, explainability, sensitivity key blocks required for building ethical AI: Big Blue

Sandip Patel, Managing Director , IBM India and South Asia

Sandip Patel, Managing Director , IBM India and South Asia

Building ethical AI (artificial intelligence) requires collaboration between governments, industry and ecosystem players, said IBM India and South Asia’s Managing Director Sandip Patel.

As artificial intelligence becomes more prominent with the technology getting increasingly embraced by everyone, all geographies, including India, should come out with dedicated policies to support AI for the greater good, Mr. Patel said responding to a query from The Hindu on the role of government in building ethical AI at the recently held Think 2023, Big Blue’s annual tech exposition. The event showcased Big Blue’s latest in AI, Generative AI, hybrid cloud, quantum computing and other technologies.

Collective and responsible effort was required to steer India into the AI era and also to make sure the benefits of ethical AI reach all equally, the IBM official further said.

“Transparency and explainability are the base of trust that is involved in building ethical AI systems. Ethical AI is all about having a level of transparency in the foundational models that are being used or data that is being used,” he elaborated.

People’s right to data privacy was extremely critical which meant sensitivity was key to the success of AI systems. Else, these could be dangerous to individuals, enterprises, governments and society as a whole, he cautioned.

“AI has to stand the test of time if it wants to revolutionise and democratise technology and bridge the digital divide in true sense,” he added.

According to Mr. Patel, ethical AI will power over a billion dreams and will be foundational in bridging the digital divide not just in India but across the globe.

“AI and Generative AI will be revolutionised and democratised with the technology reaching every nook and corner of the country in diverse languages and therefore accessible to a large number of the population,” he further said.

Mr. Patel also emphasised the need for building scalable and dependable models of AI which could be embedded into business processes and solutions to run enterprises and governments more responsibility.

Interacting with a group of tech reporters, Paul Burton, general manager, IBM Asia Pacific said that AI at some point of time would get regulated by governments, however it requires governance norms developed in collaboration with industries and all stakeholders and not an arbitrary legislation.

“There’s a lot of advanced thinking on AI at the government level. There’s also a lot of stories coming out in the press, a lot of material in academia and a lot of talk from the government on this. All these are encouraging,” he observed.

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