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ISO/IEC AI plenary expands programme of work
Date: 2023-05-24    Source:IEC   

Partnerships and collaboration were key themes of the spring plenary meeting of the IEC and ISO committee on artificial intelligence, SC 42. For the first time since the pandemic, SC 42 held an in-person meeting with remote participation.

Around 100 delegates attended the meeting in Berlin in person, with an additional 150 dialling in remotely throughout the week. About half the national delegations were headed by women.

Distinguished keynote speakers highlighted the importance of international standards in the development and deployment of AI systems. They included, among others, Christoph Winterhalter, the CEO of DIN, who opened the meeting, and Devin McDaniels of the World Trade Organization (WTO).

Mr. Winterhalter emphasized the importance of the horizontal standards that SC 42 develops for enabling the vertical, sector-specific work of ISO and IEC technical committees. Mr. McDaniels discussed the critical role that standards play in removing technical barriers to trade, which in turn can lead to greater productivity, better supply chain management and lower trade costs.

Mr. McDaniels also underlined the need for the development of a range of new standards to facilitate the work of governments around the world as they increasingly consider policies and regulations to govern AI development and use. The SC 42 Chair, Wael William Diab, stressed the importance of working with partners and stakeholders around the world.

"This reflects the critical role that international standards can play to ensure broad responsible adoption of AI. Our collaboration efforts continue to be a central part of our work taking advantage of the comprehensive toolset available to us from liaisons to joint work to outreach", he said.

Mr Diab thanked IEC and ISO, as well as the 42 SC leadership team, including convenors, editors, secretaries and other experts. "You have been working tirelessly to make this happen", he said.

Building on the existing close collaboration with IEC TC 65/SC 65A, delegates approved a potential joint working group for a follow on project. Functional safety is critical in manufacturing industries. It involves assessing potential hazards and implementing measures to mitigate or eliminate them.

The principles of functional safety can be applied to AI systems by considering potential hazards, assessing risks and implementing appropriate measures to mitigate these risks.

Delegates also approved two new technical reports (TR). The first will provide an overview of conceptual frameworks for graded benchmarking of AI system quality characteristics.

These frameworks are structured approaches for evaluating and comparing the performance of different AI systems based on specific criteria and metrics, in order to assess their overall quality and effectiveness.

The second TR will focus on synthetic data in the context of AI systems. It refers to artificially generated data that mimics real-world data but is not derived from actual observations or measurements.

Synthetic data allows researchers and developers to create large and diverse datasets without collecting or accessing sensitive or private information. It can also be used to augment existing datasets by generating additional samples that capture a broader range of scenarios, variations, or outliers.

Also at the SC 42 plenary, the Chair of CASCO, Reinaldo Figueiredo, presented an overview of their activities and led a discussion about conformity assessment related to AI. CASCO is the ISO committee responsible for developing policy related to conformity assessment, but it does not perform conformity assessment activities.

It works closely with the IEC and the majority of CASCO documents are published as joint ISO and IEC documents.

SC 42 develops international standards for artificial intelligence. Its unique holistic approach considers the entire AI ecosystem, by looking at technology capability and non-technical requirements, such as business and regulatory and policy requirements, application domain needs, and ethical and societal concerns.

SC 42 organizes a bi-annual ISO/IEC AI Workshop series that is freely available. The next SC 42 workshop is taking place on 12 and 14 June 2023.

The workshops cover four content tracks: AI applications, beneficial AI, novel AI standardization approaches, and emerging AI technology trends and requirements. Visit the IEC Academy and Capacity Building webpage for more information and registration details.

(Source: IEC)



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