Companies leading AI development, including Microsoft, Anthropic, Google, and OpenAI, have launched an industry body to oversee the “safe and responsible development” of frontier AI models.

The tech firms announced in a joint statement on Wednesday 26th July, 2023 the creation of The Frontier Model Forum. The new body will focus on creating a set of evaluations and benchmarks by drawing on member company expertise for the safe development of leading AI models.

The collaboration will aim to generate solutions to the development of responsible AI systems and is meant to support industry best practices and standards.

The Forum is set to expand as it welcomes other organisations which are developing and deploying frontier models and show commitment to the advancing the safety and responsibility of their work.

“Advanced AI technologies have the potential to profoundly benefit society, and the ability to achieve this potential requires oversight and governance,” said Anna Makanju, vice president of Global Affairs at OpenAI.

“It is vital that AI companies – especially those working on the most powerful models – align on common ground and advance thoughtful and adaptable safety practices to ensure powerful AI tools have the broadest benefit possible,” said Makanju. 

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“We are excited to collaborate with industry, civil society, government, and academia to promote safe and responsible development of the technology,” CEO of Anthropic, Dario Amodei said.

“The Frontier Model Forum will play a vital role in coordinating best practices and sharing research on frontier AI safety,” Amodei said.

The move comes as regulators push to provide guardrails around the safe deployment of AI.

The large tech companies that make up the Forum have already accepted a non-binding agreement set out by the White House over the development and release of AI systems.

US President Joe Biden announced the agreement on Friday 21st July, 2023, where he addressed presidents and CEOs representing the affected companies.

Along with Amazon, Inflection and Meta, the Forum’s company members committed to a set of regulatory actions including the external testing of AI models prior to their release to the public.

At the meeting, Biden said the tech giants have a responsibility for the development of the use of AI for a range of purposes to aid humanity from “cancer to climate change”