JAIC completes draft of AI ethics implementation guidance

Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks has been briefed on the new draft guidance.
The Jet Propulsion Labs' Team RoboSimian 275-pound robot climbs out of a Polaris vehicle after driving through obsticles during the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) Robotics Challenge at the Fairplex June 5, 2015 in Pomona, California. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The Department of Defense’s Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC) briefed Deputy Secretary of Defense Kathleen Hicks late last month on how it plans to implement the DOD’s AI ethics principles.

The brief was mandated by a May memo signed by Hicks and constitutes an initial milestone for implementing the DOD’s ethics principles, which were adopted in February of 2020. The JAIC did not provide any detail on its forthcoming guidance to be finalized by the end of October. The guidance was initially scheduled to be finalized by February 2020, a JAIC official previously told FedScoop.

“The Council will continue to adhere to the battle rhythm, collaboration efforts, and deliverable schedule established for delivery of the final Pathway document to the DSD as scheduled,” a JAIC spokesman told FedScoop.

The principles are “responsible, equitable, traceable, reliable and governable,” broad terms that the JAIC has acknowledge will need detailed guidance in order for the DOD bureaucracy to implement.


“Implementing the AI ethics principles will be hard work. The Department’s efforts over the next year will shape the DOD’s future with AI,” Lt. Geb. Jack Shanahan, former director of the JAIC said when the principles were adopted in February 2020.

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