AI governance

Definition & Introduction

AI governance is the set of rules, regulations, ethical and technical frameworks, and similar mechanisms that guide the development and deployment of artificial intelligence technologies. There are pressing questions as to whether current AI governance systems are prevalent, thoughtful, sufficient, or inclusive enough to be effective.

Senior Fellows Wendell Wallach and Anja Kaspersen, co-directors of Carnegie Council’s Artificial Intelligence & Equality Initiative (AIEI), argue that promoting the benefits of AI while addressing potential disruptions to protect public safety is possible, but not without a robust framework for the international governance of the technology. Based on multi-disciplinary discussions occurring in two June 2023 workshops organized by AIEI and IEEE SA, a formal framework was developed.

One component of the proposed framework suggests the creation of a Global AI Observatory (GAIO) to provide necessary AI research and analysis to inform decision-making. Similar to the function that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) serves in the climate space, the GAIO “would provide a reliable basis of data, models, and interpretation to guide policy and broader decision-making about AI.”

For more analysis related to AI governance, find articles, podcasts, and off-site resources below created and curated by Carnegie Council’s network of experts.

Explore the proposed AI governance framework

JUL 6, 2023 Article

The Case for a Global AI Observatory (GAIO), 2023

Making the case for a "Global AI Observatory" (GAIO) noting six main areas of activity for more serious regulation of AI.

JUL 7, 2023 Article

Achieving an International Framework for the Governance of AI

Senior Fellows Wendell Wallach and Anja Kaspersen argue in favor of a robust framework for the international governance of AI.

Human Rights Should be at the Heart of AI and Technology Governance

As a follow-on to Wallach and Kaspersen’s argument for a systemic reset of AI governance, Kate Jones explores why human rights need to be central to AI governance moving forward.

Read the article

Ways to Influence AI Policy and Governance

Merve Hickok and Marc Rotenberg, senior researcher and president of the Center for AI and Digital Policy (CAIDP) respectively, join Wallach on the AI & Equality podcast to discuss major AI policy initiatives and CAIDP’s annual Artificial Intelligence and Democratic Index.

Listen to the podcast

More from the AI & Equality podcast

FEB 7, 2023 Podcast

Technology Governance and the Role of Multilateralism, with Amandeep Singh Gill

JUL 7, 2021 Podcast

Soft Law Approaches to AI Governance

In this Artificial Intelligence & Equality podcast, Senior Fellow Anja Kaspersen speaks with Arizona State's Gary Marchant and Carlos Ignacio Gutierrez about their work characterizing soft law programs for the governance of AI. What role do these programs have in managing applications of AI?

JUN 22, 2022 Podcast

Is AI Upending Geopolitics? with Angela Kane

In this episode of the "Artificial Intelligence & Equality Initiative" podcast, Carnegie-Uehiro Fellow Wendell Wallach is joined by Angela Kane, a chair of the United Nations University Governing Council, to discuss how AI is likely to upend geopolitics.

Do you think current AI technologies have the capacity to manipulate human behavior?

Off-site Resources

Lessons From the World’s Two Experiments in AI Governance

“Artificial intelligence (AI) is both omnipresent and conceptually slippery, making it notoriously hard to regulate. Fortunately for the rest of the world, two major experiments in the design of AI governance are currently playing out in Europe and China.”


AI Governance Alliance

“A pioneering multi-stakeholder initiative that unites industry leaders, governments, academic institutions, and civil society organizations, to champion responsible global design and release of transparent and inclusive AI systems.”

Learn more

Governing AI: A Blueprint for the Future

“Don’t ask what computers can do, ask what they should do.”

This report proposes a legal and regulatory blueprint for the future and outlines Microsoft’s approach to building responsible AI.


Perspectives on Issues in AI Governance

“We have long since progressed beyond an era when advances in AI research were confined to the lab. AI has now become a real-world application technology and part of the fabric of modern life.”