The Federal Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs (BMAS) is planning a kind of TÜV for the application of artificial intelligence in German companies. According to information from the Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ), the ministry is setting up a "KI-Oberservatorium" to assess the chances and risks of artificial intelligence. The observatory will start work later this year, writes the SZ . In the medium term it is planned to set up a separate federal institute for AI with significantly more staff.
"We look at where this technology is used and where that happens in sensitive areas," said Björn Böhning, State Secretary of the BMAS, the SZ . Accordingly, the Obervatorium should assess the consequences of the use of artificial intelligence for companies and employees and help politically steer.
If, for example, it is a playlist created by an AI at a music streaming service, this would not be a problem for politicians, Böhning told SZ . "But if a self-driving car decides, a boundary post is knocked over or the group of people next to it, then it's about a different risk class, for which we then need political design," said Böhning. For ethically unacceptable applications, it may also be based on the recommendations of the "Data Ethics Committee" to prohibit.
According to SZ, the focus of the audit is on AI applications in business and working life. A particular focus is currently on current developments in the German retail sector and in the financial and banking sectors. Classic professions such as cashiers and cashiers have less and less future due to digitization and online sales platforms such as Amazon. Also in the financial industry, far-reaching consequences are expected through the use of artificial intelligence.
Artificial intelligence brings change in the labor market
According to Labor Ministry forecasts quoted by the SZ , structural changes will mean that 1.3 million jobs will be lost in Germany over the next five years, but 2.1 million jobs will be created as well. As a result, around 4 million jobs will be lost by 2035, and around 3.3 million new jobs will be added. Retraining and further education should qualify employees for the new jobs. Here is the "work-of-tomorrow law" help, the Labor Minister Hubertus Heil (SPD) has launched.
According to the Ministry of Labor, the AI Observatory should not only check the risks of artificial intelligence, but also evaluate the opportunities offered by the new technology. In the view of the ministry, Germany still has some catching up to do in the economic use of AI in international comparison.
The KI-Obersvatorium and the future Federal Institute should not remain a single German project. According to the SZ, the Ministry of Labor aims for close cooperation with the European Commission and the OECD. The aim is a Europe-wide network of cooperating AI assessment bodies.