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BMW's Principles for AI

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Oct. 26, 2020—Artificial intelligence is slowly integrating into every facet of American life. From the personalized coupons that automatically generate at the grocery store to unlocking your phone with facial recognition to your Netflix suggested recommendations—it’s all made possible through artificial intelligence. The automotive industry has been utilizing AI for a variety of tasks from diagnosing collision repair to providing estimates via companies like Galaxy.AI. 

Earlier this month, the BMW Group outlined what it calls a “code of ethics for the use of artificial intelligence” in a press release. The automaker identified seven areas that must be addressed in order to ensure the ethical and accurate use of artificial intelligence in the automotive industry. 

 

  1. Human Agency and Oversight 

Artificial intelligence has the capacity to make decisions, and with that, the BMW Group advocates for human monitoring of those decisions. The group believes that there should be ways for a human to override algorithmic decisions.  
 

  1. Technical Robustness and Safety

Safety standards are essential in the automotive industry, especially when it comes to artificial intelligence. The BMW Group aims to apply safety standards in order to decrease risk and the margin error.
 

  1. Privacy and Data Governance 

The BMW Group says that it will extend its data privacy and security to cover information that is gathered by way of artificial intelligence. Meaning data that is stored and processed by artificial intelligence will be protected.
 

  1. Transparency

In an industry where much is left open to interpretation, BMW aims to explain its AI applications through open communication. The ways in which artificial intelligence is employed will be transparent. 

 

  1. Diversity, Non-discrimination and Fairness

In building artificial intelligence applications, the BMW Group sets out to respect “human dignity.” According to the press release, “this includes preventing non-compliance AI applications.”
 

  1. Environmental and Societal Wellbeing 

The BMW Group says it is committed to developing and using artificial intelligence in a way that promotes the wellbeing of consumers. BMW says it is also committed to sustainability and climate change, viewing it not as a trend, but a call to action.
 

  1. Accountability 

The last principle aims to ensure the implementation of the other six principles through accountability. The BMW Group will identify, assess, report, and mitigate risks, per the press release. 

 

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While it is just a start, the BMW Group has outlined principles that could be applicable to any shop in the industry that is using artificial intelligence. The evolution of technology is inevitable, but the acceptance of technology rests squarely on the consumer’s shoulders. Through education, transparency, and accountability, artificial intelligence is poised to change the landscape of transportation. 

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