Global AI governance: barriers and pathways forward

International Affairs

14 Pages Posted: 2 Oct 2023 Last revised: 8 Mar 2024

See all articles by Huw Roberts

Huw Roberts

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Emmie Hine

University of Bologna- Department of Legal Studies; KU Leuven - Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP)

Mariarosaria Taddeo

University of Oxford - Oxford Internet Institute

Luciano Floridi

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

Date Written: September 29, 2023

Abstract

Recent advances in artificial intelligence (AI), combined with a proliferation in use, have led to a newfound emphasis on strengthening the global governance of AI. In this article, we assess the prospects for stronger global AI governance and consider potential pathways forward. We map the nascent landscape of international regimes focused on AI governance and conclude that a governance deficit remains due to the inadequacy of existing initiatives, gaps in the landscape and difficulties reaching agreement over more appropriate mechanisms. First-order cooperation problems stemming from interstate competition and second-order cooperation problems from dysfunctional international institutions problematise overcoming current deficiencies in global AI governance. In light of these cooperation problems, we evaluate two pathways for strengthening global AI governance: (a) developing new centralised international AI institution(s) and (b) strengthening coordination between, and capacities of, existing institutions. We argue that strengthening the existing weak ‘regime complex’ of international institutions is the more politically legitimate and viable path forward. Improving coordination between, and capacities of, existing international institutions governing AI would support inclusive and mutually reinforcing policy change that can mitigate a range of risks associated with these technologies. As first steps for strengthening the weak AI regime complex, we recommend that the OECD is foregrounded as a centre of expert AI knowledge so that it can facilitate peer pressure among states and harmonisation of policies. We also encourage scrutiny of different nodes in the regime complex to ensure that they are fulfilling appropriate functions based on their democratic mandates.

Keywords: AI governance, ethics, global governance, international cooperation, regime complex

Suggested Citation

Roberts, Huw and Hine, Emmie and Taddeo, Mariarosaria and Floridi, Luciano, Global AI governance: barriers and pathways forward (September 29, 2023). International Affairs, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4588040 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4588040

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/

Emmie Hine

University of Bologna- Department of Legal Studies ( email )

Via Zamboni 22
Bologna, Bo 40100
Italy

KU Leuven - Centre for IT & IP Law (CiTiP) ( email )

Sint-Michielsstraat 6 box 3443
Leuven, 3000
Belgium

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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