About Us

In support of our mission to benefit people and society, the Partnership on AI intends to conduct research, organize discussions, share insights, provide thought leadership, consult with relevant third parties, respond to questions from the public and media, and create educational material that advances the understanding of AI technologies including machine perception, learning, and automated reasoning.

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Our Goals

1
Develop and share best practices

Support research, discussions, identification, sharing, and recommendation of best practices in the research, development, testing, and fielding of AI technologies. Address such areas as fairness and inclusivity, explanation and transparency, security and privacy, values and ethics, collaboration between people and AI systems, interoperability of systems, and of the trustworthiness, reliability, containment, safety, and robustness of the technology.

2
Advance public understanding

Advance wider public understanding and awareness of AI by sharing insights into AI’s core technologies, potential benefits – and costs. We will act as a trusted experts on AI for society and their leaders, and will work to increase public understanding of how AI is progressing.

3
Provide an open and inclusive platform for discussion & engagement

Create and support opportunities for AI researchers and key stakeholders, including people in technology, law, policy, government, civil liberties, and the greater public, to communicate directly and openly with each other about relevant issues to AI and its influences on people and society. Ensure that key stakeholders have the knowledge, resources, and overall capacity to participate fully.

4
Identify and foster aspirational efforts in AI for socially beneficial purposes

Seek out, support, celebrate, and highlight aspirational efforts in AI for socially benevolent applications. Identify areas of untapped opportunity, including promising technologies and applications not being explored by academia and industry R&D.

  • “The Partnership on AI initiative could not come at a better time. Artificial Intelligence technologies are increasingly becoming part of our daily lives, and AI will significantly impact society in the years ahead. Fostering a shared dialogue and building common cause is crucial. We look forward to working with the Partnership on AI to educate the public and ensure that these technologies serve humanity in beneficial and responsible ways.”

    - Vicki L. Hanson

    President, Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

  • “These are truly exciting times for AI. The rapid research advances are expanding the scientific scope and day-to-day impact of the field, and are spawning enormous public interest. The time is ripe for a concerted job, of the kind this partnership promises, towards fostering the public’s understanding of how AI will augment and benefit our lives, and facilitating thoughtful dialogue about the responsible uses of this technology. As the scientific society dedicated to the advancement of AI, AAAI is thus delighted at the formation of the Partnership on AI by the industry leaders, and looks forward to working closely with it.”

    - Subbarao Kambhampati

    President, Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI)

  • “We’ve seen a very fast development in AI over a very short period of time. This field brings exciting opportunities for companies and public organizations and yet, it raises legitimate questions in the public about the way these developments will be conducted. Bringing together the major players in the field is the best way to ensure we all share the same values and overall objectives to serve the common good.”

    - Yoshua Bengio

    Professor, University of Montreal and Scientific Director, IVADO

  • “This extraordinary non-profit partnership underscores the tremendous potential of utilizing AI for the common good. We are looking forward to joining it.”

    - Oren Etzioni

    CEO, Allen Institute for AI (AI2)

  • “The latest advances in AI research and technology are likely to bring sweeping changes to every aspect of human life and our society. At this historical moment of the AI revolution, I am very pleased to see the coming together of the giants of the technology world who are at the forefront of innovating and disseminating AI to bear the responsibilities for the important discussions of AI and our society. Together, they have taken the leadership to invite us all to participate in the discussions and exchanges of ideas of the important issues brought by the AI revolution. I look forward to seeing the discussions and research supported by this immensely important efforts. And I applaud all of the participating company.”

    - Fei-Fei Li

    Associate Professor & Director, Stanford AI Lab

  • “We applaud this bold and innovative step by major industry leaders to engage the computing research community in an open discussion about avenues for AI to have a positive impact in our society. As an organization that represents both academic and industrial computer science researchers, the Computing Community Consortium recognizes the importance of connecting long-term fundamental research to societal needs. We look forward to working with the Partnership on AI to catalyze, enable, and scale AI innovations and to maximize its benefits to transportation, healthcare, education, science, and many other national priorities.”

    - Elizabeth Mynatt, Gregory D. Hager

    Chair, Computing Community Consortium,

  • “A small number of large corporations are today the powerhouses behind the development of sophisticated artificial intelligence. The inauguration of the Partnership on AI is a very welcome step towards ensuring this technology is used wisely.”

    - Murray Shanahan

    Professor of Cognitive Robotics, Imperial College London

  • “My sincere congratulations and appreciation for this new partnership. In a world of constant division and competition, a partnership of this nature is a tremendous hope for AI researchers to channel their discoveries to impact the most compelling societal needs as best known to industry.”

    - Manuela Veloso

    Herbert A. Simon University Professor and Head, Machine Learning Department, School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University

  • “AI is set to have transformative impacts on society over the coming years and decades. It is therefore encouraging that the industry is taking the initiative to create a forum in which technology leaders can share best practices and discuss what it means to be a responsible innovator in this burgeoning field.”

    - Professor Nick Bostrom

    Oxford University, Director of Future of Humanity Institute

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Group 42.1 Created using Figma

Our Work (Thematic Pillars)

  • 1

    Safety-Critical AI

    Advances in AI have the potential to improve outcomes, enhance quality, and reduce costs in such safety-critical areas as healthcare and transportation. Effective and careful applications of pattern recognition, automated decision making, and robotic systems show promise for enhancing the quality of life and preventing thousands of needless deaths.

    However, where AI tools are used to supplement or replace human decision-making, we must be sure that they are safe, trustworthy, and aligned with the ethics and preferences of people who are influenced by their actions.

    We will pursue studies and best practices around the fielding of AI in safety-critical application areas.

  • 2

    Fair, Transparent, and Accountable AI

    AI has the potential to provide societal value by recognizing patterns and drawing inferences from large amounts of data. Data can be harnessed to develop useful diagnostic systems and recommendation engines, and to support people in making breakthroughs in such areas as biomedicine, public health, safety, criminal justice, education, and sustainability.

    While such results promise to provide real benefits, we need to be sensitive to the possibility that there are hidden assumptions and biases in data, and therefore in the systems built from that data — in addition to a wide range of other system choices which can be impacted by biases, assumptions, and limits. This can lead to actions and recommendations that replicate those biases, and have serious blind spots.

    Researchers, officials, and the public should be sensitive to these possibilities and we should seek to develop methods that detect and correct those errors and biases, not replicate them. We also need to work to develop systems that can explain the rationale for inferences.

    We will pursue opportunities to develop best practices around the development and fielding of fair, explainable, and accountable AI systems.

  • 3

    AI, Labor, and the Economy

    AI advances will undoubtedly have multiple influences on the distribution of jobs and nature of work. While advances promise to inject great value into the economy, they can also be the source of disruptions as new kinds of work are created and other types of work become less needed due to automation.

    Discussions are rising on the best approaches to minimizing potential disruptions, making sure that the fruits of AI advances are widely shared and competition and innovation are encouraged and not stifled. We seek to study and understand best paths forward, and play a role in this discussion.

  • 4

    Collaborations Between People and AI Systems

    A promising area of AI is the design of systems that augment the perception, cognition, and problem-solving abilities of people. Examples include the use of AI technologies to help physicians make more timely and accurate diagnoses and assistance provided to drivers of cars to help them to avoid dangerous situations and crashes.

    Opportunities for R&D and for the development of best practices on AI-human collaboration include methods that provide people with clarity about the understandings and confidence that AI systems have about situations, means for coordinating human and AI contributions to problem solving, and enabling AI systems to work with people to resolve uncertainties about human goals.

  • 5

    Social and Societal Influences of AI

    AI advances will touch people and society in numerous ways, including potential influences on privacy, democracy, criminal justice, and human rights. For example, while technologies that personalize information and that assist people with recommendations can provide people with valuable assistance, they could also inadvertently or deliberately manipulate people and influence opinions.

    We seek to promote thoughtful collaboration and open dialogue about the potential subtle and salient influences of AI on people and society.

  • 6

    AI and Social Good

    AI offers great potential for promoting the public good, for example in the realms of education, housing, public health, and sustainability. We see great value in collaborating with public and private organizations, including academia, scientific societies, NGOs, social entrepreneurs, and interested private citizens to promote discussions and catalyze efforts to address society’s most pressing challenges.

    Some of these projects may address deep societal challenges and will be moonshots – ambitious big bets that could have far-reaching impacts. Others may be creative ideas that could quickly produce positive results by harnessing AI advances.

How we're doing it:

  • Engaging Experts

    The regular engagement of experts across multiple disciplines (including but not limited to psychology, philosophy, economics, finance, sociology, public policy, and law) to discuss and provide guidance on emerging issues related to the impact of AI on society.

  • Engaging Stakeholders

    The engagement of AI users and developers, as well as representatives of industry sectors that may be impacted by AI (such as healthcare, financial services, transportation, commerce, manufacturing, telecommunications, and media) to support best practices in the research, development, and use of AI technology within specific domains.

  • Enabling Study

    The design, execution, and financial support of objective third-party studies on best practices for the ethics, safety, fairness, inclusiveness, trust, and robustness for AI research, applications, and services. The identification and celebration of important work in these fields. The support of aspirational projects in AI that would greatly benefit people and society.

  • Learning Materials

    The development of informational materials on the current and future likely trajectories of research and development in core AI and related disciplines.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is PAI?
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    The Partnership on AI (PAI) is a multistakeholder organization that brings together academics, researchers, civil society organizations, companies building and utilizing AI technology, and and other groups working to better understand AI’s impacts. The Partnership was established to study and formulate best practices on AI technologies, to advance the public’s understanding of AI, and to serve as an open platform for discussion and engagement about AI and its influences on people and society.

  • When was PAI created?
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    The Partnership was formally established in late 2016, led by a group of AI researchers representing six of the world’s largest technology companies: Apple, Amazon, DeepMind and Google, Facebook, IBM, and Microsoft. In 2017 the addition of six not-for-profit Board members expanded the Partnership into a multi-stakeholder organization – which now represents a community of 50+ member organizations. Read the letter from our Founding Co-Chairs here.

  • Who runs PAI today?
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    The Partnership is led by Founding Executive Director Terah Lyons, who formerly served as Policy Advisor to the U.S. Chief Technology Officer in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). Terah and her team report to an Board of Directors comprised of six representatives of for-profit institutions and six Directors from not-for-profit perspectives and institutions.

  • What are the goals of PAI?
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    The goals of the Partnership are four-fold:

    First, to develop and share best-practice methods and approaches in the research, development, testing, and fielding of AI technologies;

    Second, to advance public understanding of AI across varied constituencies, including on core technologies, potential benefits, and costs;

    Third, to provide an open and inclusive platform for discussion and engagement on the future of AI, and to ensure that key stakeholders have the knowledge, resources, and overall capacity to participate fully in these important conversations; and

    Fourth, to identify and foster aspirational efforts in AI for socially benevolent applications.

    Our Partner community contributes deeply to shaping and achieving these objectives. 

  • Is PAI a lobbying organization?
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    PAI is not a lobbying organization. We do, however, intend to be a resource to policymakers when relevant and possible — for instance, in conducting research that informs AI best practices and exploring the societal consequences of certain AI systems, as well as policies around the development and use of AI systems.

The Partnership on AI (PAI) is a multistakeholder organization that brings together academics, researchers, civil society organizations, companies building and utilizing AI technology, and and other groups working to better understand AI’s impacts. The Partnership was established to study and formulate best practices on AI technologies, to advance the public’s understanding of AI, and to serve as an open platform for discussion and engagement about AI and its influences on people and society.

The Partnership was formally established in late 2016, led by a group of AI researchers representing six of the world’s largest technology companies: Apple, Amazon, DeepMind and Google, Facebook, IBM, and Microsoft. In 2017 the addition of six not-for-profit Board members expanded the Partnership into a multi-stakeholder organization – which now represents a community of 50+ member organizations. Read the letter from our Founding Co-Chairs here.

The Partnership is led by Founding Executive Director Terah Lyons, who formerly served as Policy Advisor to the U.S. Chief Technology Officer in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP). Terah and her team report to an Board of Directors comprised of six representatives of for-profit institutions and six Directors from not-for-profit perspectives and institutions.

The goals of the Partnership are four-fold:

First, to develop and share best-practice methods and approaches in the research, development, testing, and fielding of AI technologies;

Second, to advance public understanding of AI across varied constituencies, including on core technologies, potential benefits, and costs;

Third, to provide an open and inclusive platform for discussion and engagement on the future of AI, and to ensure that key stakeholders have the knowledge, resources, and overall capacity to participate fully in these important conversations; and

Fourth, to identify and foster aspirational efforts in AI for socially benevolent applications.

Our Partner community contributes deeply to shaping and achieving these objectives. 

PAI is not a lobbying organization. We do, however, intend to be a resource to policymakers when relevant and possible — for instance, in conducting research that informs AI best practices and exploring the societal consequences of certain AI systems, as well as policies around the development and use of AI systems.

The activities of the Partnership on AI are funded by charitable contributions in the form of membership dues paid by its for-profit Partners and contributions and grants from non-profit organizations and foundations.

Artificial intelligence technologies hold significant promise for raising the quality of people’s lives across the world. However, with technological development comes new concerns and challenges associated with the responsible development and the effects of AI, including the safety and trustworthiness of AI technologies, the fairness and transparency of systems, and the intentional as well as inadvertent influences of AI on people and society.

Our thematic pillars illustrate a set of issues where PAI sees some of the greatest risks and opportunities for AI. A central goal of PAI, building upon the issues enumerated in these pillars, is to ensure that the benefits of AI are distributed as broadly as possible, and that the challenges associated with AI are understood and addressed. 

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