· 7) Failure Transparency

If an AI system causes harm, it should be possible to ascertain why.
Principle: Asilomar AI Principles, Jan 3-8, 2017

Published by Future of Life Institute (FLI), Beneficial AI 2017

Related Principles


When an AI system significantly impacts a person, community, group or environment, there should be a timely process to allow people to challenge the use or output of the AI system. This principle aims to ensure the provision of efficient, accessible mechanisms that allow people to challenge the use or output of an AI system, when that AI system significantly impacts a person, community, group or environment. The definition of the threshold for ‘significant impact’ will depend on the context, impact and application of the AI system in question. Knowing that redress for harm is possible, when things go wrong, is key to ensuring public trust in AI. Particular attention should be paid to vulnerable persons or groups. There should be sufficient access to the information available to the algorithm, and inferences drawn, to make contestability effective. In the case of decisions significantly affecting rights, there should be an effective system of oversight, which makes appropriate use of human judgment.

Published by Department of Industry, Innovation and Science, Australian Government in AI Ethics Principles, Nov 7, 2019

· 9. Safety

Safety is about ensuring that the system will indeed do what it is supposed to do, without harming users (human physical integrity), resources or the environment. It includes minimizing unintended consequences and errors in the operation of the system. Processes to clarify and assess potential risks associated with the use of AI products and services should be put in place. Moreover, formal mechanisms are needed to measure and guide the adaptability of AI systems.

Published by The European Commission’s High-Level Expert Group on Artificial Intelligence in Draft Ethics Guidelines for Trustworthy AI, Dec 18, 2018

4. Fairness Obligation.

Institutions must ensure that AI systems do not reflect unfair bias or make impermissible discriminatory decisions. [Explanatory Memorandum] The Fairness Obligation recognizes that all automated systems make decisions that reflect bias and discrimination, but such decisions should not be normatively unfair. There is no simple answer to the question as to what is unfair or impermissible. The evaluation often depends on context. But the Fairness Obligation makes clear that an assessment of objective outcomes alone is not sufficient to evaluate an AI system. Normative consequences must be assessed, including those that preexist or may be amplified by an AI system.

Published by The Public Voice coalition, established by Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Universal Guidelines for Artificial Intelligence, Oct 23, 2018

5. Assessment and Accountability Obligation.

An AI system should be deployed only after an adequate evaluation of its purpose and objectives, its benefits, as well as its risks. Institutions must be responsible for decisions made by an AI system. [Explanatory Memorandum] The Assessment and Accountability Obligation speaks to the obligation to assess an AI system prior to and during deployment. Regarding assessment, it should be understood that a central purpose of this obligation is to determine whether an AI system should be established. If an assessment reveals substantial risks, such as those suggested by principles concerning Public Safety and Cybersecurity, then the project should not move forward.

Published by The Public Voice coalition, established by Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) in Universal Guidelines for Artificial Intelligence, Oct 23, 2018

1. Demand That AI Systems Are Transparent

A transparent artificial intelligence system is one in which it is possible to discover how, and why, the system made a decision, or in the case of a robot, acted the way it did. In particular: A. We stress that open source code is neither necessary nor sufficient for transparency – clarity cannot be obfuscated by complexity. B. For users, transparency is important because it builds trust in, and understanding of, the system, by providing a simple way for the user to understand what the system is doing and why. C. For validation and certification of an AI system, transparency is important because it exposes the system’s processes for scrutiny. D. If accidents occur, the AI will need to be transparent and accountable to an accident investigator, so the internal process that led to the accident can be understood. E. Workers must have the right to demand transparency in the decisions and outcomes of AI systems as well as the underlying algorithms (see principle 4 below). This includes the right to appeal decisions made by AI algorithms, and having it reviewed by a human being. F. Workers must be consulted on AI systems’ implementation, development and deployment. G. Following an accident, judges, juries, lawyers, and expert witnesses involved in the trial process require transparency and accountability to inform evidence and decision making. The principle of transparency is a prerequisite for ascertaining that the remaining principles are observed. See Principle 2 below for operational solution.

Published by UNI Global Union in Top 10 Principles For Ethical Artificial Intelligence, Dec 11, 2017