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Artificial Intelligence: Key Practices to Help Ensure Accountability in Federal Use

GAO-23-106811, Artificial Intelligence: Key Practices to Help Ensure Accountability in Federal Use. “Artificial intelligence (AI) is evolving at a rapid pace and the federal government cannot afford to be reactive to its complexities, risks, and societal consequences. Federal guidance has focused on ensuring AI is responsible, equitable, traceable, reliable, and governable. Third-party assessments and audits are important to achieving these goals. However, a critical mass of workforce expertise is needed to enable federal agencies to accelerate the delivery and adoption of AI. Participants in an October 2021 roundtable convened by GAO discussed agencies’ needs for digital services staff, the types of work that a more technical workforce could execute in areas such as artificial intelligence, and challenges associated with current hiring methods. They noted such staff would require a variety of digital and government-related skills. Participants also discussed challenges associated with existing policies, infrastructure, laws, and regulations that may hinder agency recruitment and retention of digital services staff. During a September 2020 Comptroller General Forum on AI , experts discussed approaches to ensure federal workers have the skills and expertise needed for AI implementation. Experts also discussed how principles and frameworks on the use of AI can be operationalized into practices for managers and supervisors of these systems, as well as third-party assessors. Following the forum, GAO developed an AI Accountability Framework of key practices to help ensure responsible AI use by federal agencies and other entities involved in AI systems. The Framework is organized around four complementary principles: governance, data, performance, and monitoring.”

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