Professor Nazli Choucri: Governor Dukakis, A Leader for a Better Future, Inspires Us in AI Governance

Nov 26, 2023News

On November 2, 2023, at Harvard University Loeb House, during the BGF Conference commemorating the 90th birthday of Governor Dukakis, Co-founder, and Chair of BGF, MIT Professor Nazli Choucri, BGF Board Member, shared her insights as a distinguished contributor to the book “Remaking the World – Toward an Age of Global Enlightenment.” Here are the keynotes from her speech:

I want to revisit Michael Dukakis and highlight his various qualities as a person, individual, statesman, manager, leader, collaborator, problem solver, and inspirer for a better future. Those who have worked with him recognize his calm and compassionate nature. He handles differences of views with equilibrium and balance, efficiently reviewing and assessing priorities brought to him. In his interactions, he steers with respect for others, earning their respect in return.

We live in three interconnected worlds: the social, geopolitical human society; the natural environment; and the cyber domain. Our dilemma at this point in time is that we haven’t connected strategically, intellectually, theoretically, or even computationally to those three realities where we live. These are not autonomous anymore; they’re interconnected, but very few of us can really pull together where the connections really are. So, we’re faced with technological change.

Technological change and advances that are moving very rapidly, perhaps faster than we are able to manage. I want to conclude with a noteworthy discovery that around 74 countries have formal AI policies according to the OECD Observatory. The common core among them raises questions about the governance of AI with ethical considerations. Assessing outliers is crucial – are they outrageous and should be ignored, or integrated? This corpus of policies requires closer analysis and is of great importance to the governor.