OpenAI, the startup behind the wildly popular ChatGPT artificial intelligence chatbot, said Thursday it will award 10 equal grants from a $1 million fund for experiments that examine democratic processes to determine how AI software should be controlled to overcome biases and address other factors.
The $100,000 grants will go to recipients who present compelling frameworks for answering questions such as whether AI should criticize public figures and what it should consider the “median individual” in the world, according to a blog post announcing the fund.
Critics of AI systems, such as ChatGPT, say they have an inherent bias in the inputs used to shape their points of view. Users have found examples of racist or sexist output from AI software depending on the questions they answer. Concerns are growing that AI working with search engines such as Google from Alphabet Inc and Bing from Microsoft Corp. convincingly produce false information.
Backed by $10 billion from Microsoft, OpenAI has led the call for regulation of AI. Yet it recently threatened to pull out of the European Union over proposed rules that the company says could be too onerous.
“The current draft of the EU AI Act would be over-regulatory, but we’ve heard it’s being pulled out,” OpenAI’s chief executive Sam Altman told Reuters. “It’s still being talked about.”
The startup’s grants wouldn’t fund much AI research. The salaries of AI engineers and others working in this fast-growing industry easily exceed $100,000 and can reach $300,000 or more.
AI systems “should benefit all of humanity and be as inclusive as possible,” OpenAI said in the blog post. “We are launching this grant program to take a first step in this direction.”
The San Francisco startup said the results of the funding could shape its own vision for AI governance, though it said no recommendations would be “binding.”
Tags: OpenAI grants governance ideas