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The University of Maryland is in a position to make a real impact on artificial intelligence governance as a member of the AI Safety Institute Consortium, announced Feb. 8, 2024 by Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo.

“ARLIS has already made significant contributions to AI engineering and AI assurance in its role as a UARC supporting the defense and intelligence communities,” said Dr. Craig Lawrence, ARLIS interim executive director. “Working with the Department of Commerce and the National Institute for Standards and Technology through the AISIC allows ARLIS to aid in coordinating policy, practice, and methodology in AI engineering and assurance across the federal government. ARLIS and UMD are in a position to make a real impact on AI governance from a whole of government perspective.”

The university’s role in AISIC will be co-led by ARLIS and the Institute for Trustworthy AI in Law & Society (TRAILS) at the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS).

The consortium, made up of more than 200 members from different sectors like companies, academia, government, and civil society, brings together AI creators, users, researchers, and stakeholders. This diverse group aims to improve AI's positive effects on technology and society while minimizing misuse and risks.

ARLIS facilitates AI research and development, policymaking, academic outreach, and workforce development tailored to the needs of the Department of Defense and the intelligence community. ARLIS's core mission aligns with leading the partnership between UMD and AISIC by bringing its expertise in developing scientific foundations and engineering sociotechnical capabilities to advance AI trustworthiness and safety in the context of national security and beyond.

The AISIC holds significant promise for UMD and ARLIS. This partnership not only strengthens UMD's commitment to cutting-edge research and innovation but also reinforces ARLIS's mission to support academic initiatives focused on AI research, testing, and guidance, fostering a deeper understanding of AI's benefits and risks for the betterment of society.