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14 global tech giants adopt business pledge on 'responsible' development of AI

By Yonhap

Published : May 22, 2024 - 11:13

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AI Global Forum held at the Korea Institute of Science and Technology in Seoul on Wednesday (Ministry of Science and ICT) AI Global Forum held at the Korea Institute of Science and Technology in Seoul on Wednesday (Ministry of Science and ICT)

A group of South Korean and global tech companies adopted a joint pledge Wednesday, vowing to responsibly develop and use artificial intelligence and to address social challenges with the technology.

The Seoul AI Business Pledge was announced by 14 companies, including Korea's Samsung Electronics Co., Naver Corp., Kakao Corp. and KT Corp., as well as global big tech companies, such as Google, Microsoft, OpenAI and IBM, during the opening ceremony of the AI Global Forum in Seoul.

The AI Global Forum is part of the two-day AI Seoul Summit, co-hosted by South Korea and Britain, as a follow-up to last year's inaugural global AI safety summit, where the first global guidelines on AI safety were adopted.

"We commit to upholding the three strategic priorities, through our efforts including advancing AI safety research, identifying best practices, collaborating across sectors, and helping AI meet society's greatest challenges," the pledge read.

The three priorities are: ensuring responsible development and use of AI, pursuing sustainable development and innovation in AI, and ensuring the equitable benefits of AI for all.

In the pledge, the companies acknowledge the rapid acceleration of technological advancements in AI and their growing impact on the global community. They vowed to work to ensure responsible AI development in line with the Seoul Declaration adopted by the AI Seoul Summit the previous day.

The Seoul Declaration called for promoting safe, innovative and inclusive AI to address challenges and opportunities associated with the fast-evolving technology.

The AI Global Forum is taking place on Wednesday with representatives from 19 countries, including the United States, Japan, Germany, France and Italy, attending the ministers' session to discuss actions to strengthen AI safety.

Industry officials, including Jason Kwon, chief strategy officer of OpenAI, and Tom Lue, vice president of Google DeepMind, are set to join roundtable discussions.

In the opening ceremony of Wednesday's forum, Andrew Ng, head of the global AI venture studio AI Fund, delivered a keynote speech, urging governments to promote both innovation and safety in AI.

"Even though the media tends to focus on AI technology, most of the opportunities are in building AI applications," said Ng, emphasizing the distinction between technology and its applications, which meet specific customer needs.

He noted, "Risks are a function of the application, not the technology," and recommended that governments regulate specific AI applications rather than general-purpose technologies like large language models.

Ng also said AI can be a "solution" to the challenges the global society faces, such as climate change, by providing AI simulations.

Marc Raibert, founder of US robotics firm Boston Dynamics and the executive director of the AI Institute, also said in a speech that the integration of AI and robotics technologies can increase productivity around the world and give opportunities to solve humanity's problems. (Yonhap)