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Our Take on AI

| 2 minutes read

U.S. Commerce Secretary Announces Expansion of AI Safety Institute Leadership Team

In a significant move towards ensuring the safe and responsible development of artificial intelligence (AI), U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo has announced the expansion of the executive leadership team at the U.S. AI Safety Institute (AISI). The institute, housed within the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), was established under the direction of President Biden to mitigate the risks associated with AI while harnessing its potential benefits. The new appointments bring together experts from various fields to address the challenges and opportunities presented by this transformative technology.

Expanding the Leadership Team
Secretary Raimondo named five new members to the AISI executive leadership team: Paul Christiano as Head of AI Safety, Adam Russell as Chief Vision Officer, Mara Campbell as Acting Chief Operating Officer and Chief of Staff, Rob Reich as Senior Advisor, and Mark Latonero as Head of International Engagement. These individuals join AISI Director Elizabeth Kelly and Chief Technology Officer Elham Tabassi, who were announced in February.

The diverse backgrounds and expertise of the new leadership team members reflect the multifaceted approach required to tackle the complex issues surrounding AI safety. Paul Christiano, for example, brings his experience from OpenAI and the Alignment Research Center, where he focused on aligning machine learning systems with human interests. Adam Russell, the new Chief Vision Officer, has a background in human-AI teaming, forecasting, and collective intelligence from his work at the University of Southern California and various government agencies.

Objectives and Responsibilities
The expanded leadership team will be responsible for designing and conducting tests on frontier AI models, developing guidelines for AI safety evaluations, and implementing risk mitigation strategies. They will also engage with civil society organizations and businesses to ensure that the institute's efforts reflect the input of a diverse range of stakeholders.

International collaboration is another key aspect of the AISI's mission. Mark Latonero, the Head of International Engagement, will lead efforts to achieve globally aligned approaches to guidance, testing, and standards development. This involves expanding partnerships with counterpart government institutes, multilateral organizations, international standards organizations, and other scientific offices to further the vision of a global scientific network for AI safety.

The expansion of the U.S. AI Safety Institute's leadership team demonstrates the government's commitment to addressing the challenges posed by AI technology. By bringing together experts from academia, industry, and government, the institute aims to develop a comprehensive approach to AI safety that balances the need for innovation with the importance of mitigating risks.

As AI continues to evolve and its applications become more widespread, the work of the AISI will help shape the future of this transformative technology. The institute's efforts to establish guidelines, engage with stakeholders, and collaborate internationally will help ensure that AI is developed and deployed in a manner that aligns with U.S. values and interests while promoting the safe and responsible use of this powerful tool.

“To safeguard our global leadership on responsible AI and ensure we’re equipped to fulfill our mission to mitigate the risks of AI and harness its benefits, we need the top talent our nation has to offer. That is precisely why we’ve selected these individuals, who are the best in their fields, to join the U.S. AI Safety Institute executive leadership team,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.