Any federal agency looking to capitalize on the potential of artificial intelligence (AI) must also acknowledge its impact. Much more than just a technological tool, AI is growing to the point where it often has as much influence as the people using it. That’s true both within and outside the organization.
Deploying AI is no longer just about training it to perform a given task. AI must be “raised” to act as a responsible representative of the agency and a contributing member of society. Many enterprises still treat AI as a software program—a tool to be used. Yet no one would expect a tool to “act” responsibly, explain its decisions, or work well with others. Given how AI systems’ decisions can affect people, we must teach AI to do these things, and more.
By recognizing the impact AI now has in society—and raising it accordingly—organizations can create a collaborative and powerful new member of the workforce. However, collaboration will be most successful if agencies ensure ways of trusting an AI system’s outputs, whether by citizens and employees or other artificially intelligent systems.
Video analytics is an application promise to accelerate the shift in decision making to AI. Agencies have opportunities to adopt video analytics that could supplant the need for around-the-clock monitoring by humans. In addition to freeing those resources for higher-value work, the fundamental principle is that AI will be more efficient in continuous monitoring—and more thorough in spotting and alerting even the most minute anomalies.
Yet delivering that vision requires well “raised” analytics. Government will need to implement processes to ensure that new technologies are used appropriately make fair, ethical, prudent decisions. That requires accurate training data as well as conscious and continual efforts to identify and eliminate potential biases.