EP: Resolution on Artificial Intelligence and Automated Decision Making
EU institutions are dealing with the question of how the EU should react to the rapid development of artificial intelligence (AI). Alongside the Commission White Paper on AI of 19 February 2020, which was followed by the LIBE committee hearing on the use of AI in the criminal law field (see separate news items), the European Parliament adopted a resolution on 12 February 2020: the resolution focuses on consumer protection as regards AI technology and automated decision making (ADM). It sets out that an examination of the current EU legal framework, including the consumer law acquis, product safety, and market surveillance legislation, is needed to check whether it is able to properly respond to AI and ADM and provide a high level of consumer protection. MEPs mainly state the following:
- ADM has huge potential to deliver innovative and improved services, but consumers should “be properly informed about how the system functions, about how to reach a human with decision-making powers, and about how the system’s decisions can be checked and corrected”;
- ADM systems should use “explainable and unbiased algorithms”;
- Review structures must be set up to remedy possible mistakes;
- While automated decision-making processes can improve the efficiency and accuracy of services, “humans must always be ultimately responsible for, and able to overrule, decisions that are taken in the context of professional services”, e.g., legal professions;
- Supervision or independent oversight by qualified professionals is important where legitimate public interests are at stake;
- Legislation must follow a risk-based approach.
MEPs favour adjusting the EU's safety and liability rules to the new technology. The Commission is called on to take respective legislative action.
The resolution will be transmitted to the Council and the Commission, so that they can take the EP’s views on AI into account. Digital transformation is one of the priorities of the Commission under President Ursula von der Leyen.