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    NIST Nov. 17 Workshop on AI Safety Gaps Offers Opportunity for Industry Participation

President Biden’s executive order (EO) on artificial intelligence (AI) is a call to action for the manufacturing industry. Under the EO, experts at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) will lead technical work on AI safety for the U.S. government, and they are moving rapidly to develop industry standards and new technologies for testing and evaluating AI safety.

In addition, the Bureau of Industry and Security (BIS) will invoke the Defense Production Act to institute measures to enhance safety as next-generation frontier AI models are developed, including measures requiring developers to report the steps they are taking to test their models and protect them from theft.

On November 17, NIST is hosting the USAISI Workshop on Collaboration to Enable Safe and Trustworthy AI. Information and registration for the NIST Workshop may be found here. The in-person deadline for registration is November 15, but the workshop can be attended remotely.

In addition, an informative video describing the steps NIST is quickly taking on the AI safety front is available here.

The EO, released October 30, 2023 and published in the Federal Register on November 1, 2023, requires the Department of Commerce within 270 days to promulgate guidelines and best practices for developing and deploying trustworthy AI systems.

The urgency appears to be focused on biotechnology, cybersecurity and critical infrastructure, generative AI, and dual-purpose foundation models. However, there are numerous action items under the EO that will impact a wider range of industries and AI applications. The expectation also is that standards and tools adopted quickly for what is seen as larger threats will also be adopted more widely as time goes on. So, what is done now will be important for the future for all industry participants developing or using AI.

A section in the EO on transportation promotes both incentives and standard-setting initiatives for the safe and responsible use of AI in transportation.

Additionally, the EO contains initiatives for opening up immigration opportunities for data scientists and other AI specialists, as well as other employment measures. Funding opportunities are described for promoting competition in the semiconductor sector, and there are restrictions on offering infrastructure-as-a-service products to foreign resellers.

We will report on the EO and its voluminous content in more detail soon. For now, though, we wanted to call attention to the workshop opportunity presented by NIST, and also let you know that Frost Brown Todd can coach you through your organization’s AI governance activities. For more information, contact the authors of this article or any attorney with the firm’s Manufacturing team or Data, Digital Assets, and Technology practice.