National AI Strategy
The National AI Strategy, known as "AI – Here for Good", was first introduced in 2021.
The strategy is founded upon three core principles:
- Adopting a human-centric approach to the application of AI;
- Staying open and adaptable to new innovations; and
- Ensuring good governance to build trust and confidence for innovation to flourish.
On the 10th of August 2023, the Minister of State for Trade Promotion, Digital and Company Regulation, Dara Calleary, published Ireland's Progress Report on its AI Strategy. Since its introduction, the strategy has yielded a number of significant advancements, some of which include:
- The appointment of Ireland's AI Ambassador, Dr Patricia Scanlan
- The establishment of an Enterprise Digital Advisory Forum
- Completing the Expert Group on Future Skills report on AI Skills
- Publication of the NSAI's AI Standards and Assurance Roadmap
- The establishment of an AI Innovation Hub
- Delivering the National Youth Assembly on AI
- Joining the Global Partnership on AI
AI is already transforming various aspects of our work lives and will continue to do so. The Minster has acknowledged that Ireland has made excellent progress in implementing the National AI Strategy and seeks to maintain a strong position to capitalize on future opportunities and tackle future challenges.
The report sets out several priorities for the coming year, some of which include:
- influencing the regulation of AI in Ireland and internationally, in particular in the development of the EU AI Act
- supporting businesses and workers in adopting AI and upskilling and adapting through the AI Innovation Hub
- finalizing and implementing guidelines for the use of AI in the public sector
- considering what additional supports may be needed for the AI sector and businesses adopting AI in Ireland
Perhaps the most intriguing development is the establishment of an AI Advisory Council who will provide independent expert advice to the government on AI policy, with a specific focus on building public trust and promoting the development of trustworthy, person-centred AI. The Council will aim to assist us in better understanding both the opportunities and risks associated with AI so we can adequately plan for its integration into our everyday lives.
In his report, the Minister also highlights the importance of international developments and Ireland's commitment to a human-centered, ethical, and trust-based approach to AI. The Minister's core priority is ensuring that AI is fostered and deployed in a safe and trustworthy manner that encourages innovation and public confidence.
As we hear more about the emergence of AI on a daily basis, it certainly is encouraging to see Ireland acting as a frontrunner in its implementation.
You can view the Progress Report here.
Written by Sinéad Taaffe, Damien Watson and Michael O'Tighearnagh.
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