The European Union’s (EU) AI Act (AIA) aspires to establish the first comprehensive regulatory scheme for artificial intelligence, but its impact will not stop at the EU’s borders. In fact, some EU policymakers believe it is a critical goal of the AIA to set a worldwide standard, so much so that some refer to a race to regulate AI. This framing implies that not only is there value in regulating AI systems, but that being among the first major governments to do so will have broad global impact to the benefit of the EU—often referred to as the “Brussels Effect.” Yet, while some components of the AIA will have important effects on global markets, Europe alone will not be setting a comprehensive new international standard for AI.
The extraterritorial impact of the AIA will vary widely between sectors and applications, but individually examining the key provisions of the AIA offers insight into the extent of a Brussels effect that can be expected.
This is a report from the Brookings Institute, written by Alex Engler.