Artificial Intelligence Regulation in the United Kingdom: A Path to Good Governance and Global Leadership?

Internet Policy Review

23 Pages Posted: 23 Sep 2022 Last revised: 28 Apr 2023

See all articles by Huw Roberts

Huw Roberts

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Alexander Babuta

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Jessica Morley

University of Oxford - Bennett Institute of Applied Data Science

Christopher Thomas

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Mariarosaria Taddeo

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Luciano Floridi

Yale University - Digital Ethics Center; University of Bologna- Department of Legal Studies

Date Written: May 1, 2023

Abstract

On March 29th 2023, the United Kingdom (UK) government published its AI Regulation White Paper, a “proportionate and pro-innovation regulatory framework” for AI designed to support innovation, identify and address risks, and establish the UK as an “AI superpower”. In this article, we assess whether the approach outlined in this policy document is appropriate for meeting the country’s stated ambitions. We argue that the proposed continuation of a sector-led approach, which relies on existing regulators addressing risks that fall within their remits, could support contextually appropriate and novel AI governance initiatives. However, a growing emphasis from the central government on promoting innovation through weakening checks, combined with domestic tensions between Westminster and the UK’s devolved nations, will undermine the effectiveness and ethical permissibility of UK AI governance initiatives. At the same time, the likelihood of the UK’s initiatives proving successful is contingent on relationships with, and decisions from, other jurisdictions, particularly the European Union. If left unaddressed in subsequent policy, these factors risk transforming the UK into a reluctant follower, rather than a global leader, in AI governance. We conclude this paper by outlining a set of recommendations for UK policymakers to mitigate the domestic and international risks associated with the country’s current trajectory.

Keywords: AI, Ethics, governance, United Kingdom, Brexit, Brussels Effect

Suggested Citation

Roberts, Huw and Babuta, Alexander and Morley, Jessica and Thomas, Christopher and Taddeo, Mariarosaria and Floridi, Luciano, Artificial Intelligence Regulation in the United Kingdom: A Path to Good Governance and Global Leadership? (May 1, 2023). Internet Policy Review, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4209504 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4209504

Huw Roberts (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute ( email )

1 St. Giles
University of Oxford
Oxford OX1 3PG Oxfordshire, Oxfordshire OX1 3JS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://https://digitalethicslab.oii.ox.ac.uk/huw-roberts/

Alexander Babuta

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Jessica Morley

University of Oxford - Bennett Institute of Applied Data Science ( email )

Christopher Thomas

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Mariarosaria Taddeo

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute ( email )

1 St. Giles
University of Oxford
Oxford OX1 3PG Oxfordshire, Oxfordshire OX1 3JS
United Kingdom

Luciano Floridi

Yale University - Digital Ethics Center ( email )

85 Trumbull Street
New Haven, CT CT 06511
United States
2034326473 (Phone)

University of Bologna- Department of Legal Studies ( email )

Via Zamboni 22
Bologna, Bo 40100
Italy

HOME PAGE: http://www.unibo.it/sitoweb/luciano.floridi/en

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