CMU Artificial Intelligence Experts Brief Policymakers

This September, Carnegie Mellon researchers - leaders in developing artificial intelligence (AI) tools to benefit society - lent their expertise to a series of policy briefings in Washington, D.C, and at the 78th United Nations General Assembly in New York.

As AI continues to rapidly evolve, CMU is leading national conversations around its fair use and development.

The Need for Transparency in Artificial Intelligence

Ramayya Krishnan , dean of CMU’s Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy, appeared before the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Data Security on Tuesday, Sept. 12. Chaired by U.S. Sen. John Hickenlooper, the hearing explored how to increase transparency in AI technologies for consumers, identified uses of AI that are beneficial or "high-risk" and evaluated the potential impact of policies designed to increase trustworthiness in the transformational technology.

Krishnan presented senators with four recommendations: 

Require all federal agencies to use the NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology) AI Risk Management Framework during the design, development, procurement, use and management of their AI use cases. 

Require all AI models (open source and closed source models) that produce content to label their content with watermarking and provenance technology and provide a tool to detect the label. 

Require standardized documentation, such as audited financial statements, that would be verifiable by a trusted third party (e.g., an auditor). Akin to nutrition labels on food packaging, these make it clear what went into producing the model. 

Investing in a trust infrastructure, such as an  AI lead response team (ALRT)  to connect vendors, AI system deployers and users. The ALRT would catalog incidents, record vulnerabilities, test and verify models, and recommend solutions and share best practices to minimize systemic risks as well as harm stemming from vulnerability exploits. ALRT is modeled after the computer emergency response team (CERT) established by the government at Carnegie Mellon in the late 1980s in response to cyber security vulnerabilities and threats.

Governing AI Through Acquisition and Procurement

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Carnegie Mellon University’s Rayid Ghani testified as a witness during the U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing entitled " Governing AI Through Acquisition and Procurement. " 

his testimony , Ghani put forward recommendations for governments on how to procure and use AI systems in way that will result in a more equitable society.

Artificial Intelligence for Accelerating Progress on the Sustainable Development Goals

William Sanders , dean of the College of Engineering, and Carnegie Mellon University Africa student Choukouriyah Arinloye, presented during " Artificial Intelligence for Accelerating Progress on the Sustainable Development Goals: Addressing Society’s Greatest Challenges ," held as part of the 78th United Nations General Assembly and was hosted by U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

Participants, including Sanders and Arinloye, were asked to present demonstrated applications of AI that could advance progress in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals , including applications focused on health, education, food security, energy and climate action.

CMU’s Summer of AI Experts on the Hill

CMU President Jahanian Joined U.S. President at Signing of the Historic CHIPS and Science Act

CMU Dean Appointed to National Artificial Intelligence Advisory Committee