Why Australia is falling behind on AI

Why Australia is falling behind on AI

Experts have warned an immature legal framework, a lack of technologists on company boards, and poor collaboration between business and academia is preventing Australia from realising the full potential of rapid developments in artificial intelligence technology.

Speaking at The Australian Financial Review Future Briefings event in Sydney, a panel of experts from across related disciplines said that while a flurry of AI development is underway across local universities, law firms, and businesses, there was a worrying lack of central coordination when it came to legal boundaries and industry collaboration.

Catriona Wallace, founder and executive director of ASX-listed Flamingo AI, said although businesses were adopting voluntary AI ethics principles, there are no AI-specific laws governing the space.

Her company is part of a pilot program trialling a new set of principles governing the development of systems using artificial intelligence, following a government consultation period for a national ethical framework.

“There are no explicit laws … there are industry domain specific regulations, but nothing for me as a vendor, or my clients who use AI that sets out a clear legal path,” Ms Wallace told the event, presented by NBN Co.

“It basically means that there is little control on development and use of AI in Australia.”

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