Giorgia Meloni on the rise of artificial intelligence. “Digital transformation is one of the most complex challenges we are facing, transforming the world around us and the way we relate to each other” – a “technological tsunami that we must know how to deal with.” That’s how the Italian Prime Minister framed the debate on AI through a video message to open the ComoLake digital conference on Thursday, stressing that Italy “intends to play a leading role” in regulating it.
- She also took part in a round table on AI, co-chaired by Swedish Prime Minister Ulf Kristersson and Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, on the sidelines of the European Political Community summit in Granada.
Is the person still the end goal? The development of AI is a systemic shift: up to this point, explained PM Meloni, progress was geared at optimising human capabilities by replacing physical labour – but maintaining the human at the centre. Whereas today, it’s the intellect that is “in danger of being supplanted, with consequences that may be unpredictable.”
- For instance, the impact of AI on the labour market might actually lead to greater inequality and increasingly unequal concentrations of power, she stressed.
The global regulatory challenge. Believing that AI should remain a rule-less dominion “would be an unforgivable mistake,” warned the Italian PM, arguing in favour of the need to protect humanity. That’s “a challenge that individual nations cannot handle alone,” a concept she had reiterated across global forums such as the UN General Assembly.
- “We will be talking about it at a high level during the Italian G-7 Presidency in 2024,” she vowed, noting that the international community “must work together to develop global governance mechanisms” that may “ensure that the applications of this new technology are an opportunity in the service of humankind.”
The NCA is on it, too. PM Meloni then stressed the need for “algorethics” – a portmanteau of “algorithm” and “ethics” that she has been using consistently to indicate Rome’s approach to regulating AI. Quoting her words, Bruno Frattasi – Director-General of the National Cybersecurity Agency (ACN) – emphasised the importance of reaching a degree of global AI governance and a “full accord of views in the international community” to avoid loopholes, as he explained at ComoLake.
- Recalling that the first anthropocentric regulation governing AI is incoming at the EU level, Mr Frattasi remarked on the ACN’s inevitable involvement in the development of AI tools.