Advanced AI models hold the promise of tremendous benefits for humanity, but society needs to proactively manage the accompanying risks. In this paper, we focus on what we term "frontier AI" models: highly capable foundation models that could possess dangerous capabilities sufficient to pose severe risks to public safety. Frontier AI models pose a distinct regulatory challenge: dangerous capabilities can arise unexpectedly; it is difficult to robustly prevent a deployed model from being misused; and, it is difficult to stop a model's capabilities from proliferating broadly. To address these challenges, at least three building blocks for the regulation of frontier models are needed: (1) standard-setting processes to identify appropriate requirements for frontier AI developers, (2) registration and reporting requirements to provide regulators with visibility into frontier AI development processes, and (3) mechanisms to ensure compliance with safety standards for the development and deployment of frontier AI models. Industry self-regulation is an important first step. However, wider societal discussions and government intervention will be needed to create standards and to ensure compliance with them. We consider several options to this end, including granting enforcement powers to supervisory authorities and licensure regimes for frontier AI models. Finally, we propose an initial set of safety standards. These include conducting pre-deployment risk assessments; external scrutiny of model behavior; using risk assessments to inform deployment decisions; and monitoring and responding to new information about model capabilities and uses post-deployment. We hope this discussion contributes to the broader conversation on how to balance public safety risks and innovation benefits from advances at the frontier of AI development.
* Update July 11th: - Added missing footnote back in. - Adjusted author
order (mistakenly non-alphabetical among the first 6 authors) and adjusted
affiliations (Jess Whittlestone's affiliation was mistagged and Gillian
Hadfield had SRI added to her affiliations)
Codex, a large language model (LLM) trained on a variety of codebases, exceeds the previous state of the art in its capacity to synthesize and generate code. Although Codex provides a plethora of benefits, models that may generate code on such scale have significant limitations, alignment problems, the potential to be misused, and the possibility to increase the rate of progress in technical fields that may themselves have destabilizing impacts or have misuse potential. Yet such safety impacts are not yet known or remain to be explored. In this paper, we outline a hazard analysis framework constructed at OpenAI to uncover hazards or safety risks that the deployment of models like Codex may impose technically, socially, politically, and economically. The analysis is informed by a novel evaluation framework that determines the capacity of advanced code generation techniques against the complexity and expressivity of specification prompts, and their capability to understand and execute them relative to human ability.
The range of application of artificial intelligence (AI) is vast, as is the potential for harm. Growing awareness of potential risks from AI systems has spurred action to address those risks, while eroding confidence in AI systems and the organizations that develop them. A 2019 study found over 80 organizations that published and adopted "AI ethics principles'', and more have joined since. But the principles often leave a gap between the "what" and the "how" of trustworthy AI development. Such gaps have enabled questionable or ethically dubious behavior, which casts doubts on the trustworthiness of specific organizations, and the field more broadly. There is thus an urgent need for concrete methods that both enable AI developers to prevent harm and allow them to demonstrate their trustworthiness through verifiable behavior. Below, we explore mechanisms (drawn from arXiv:2004.07213) for creating an ecosystem where AI developers can earn trust - if they are trustworthy. Better assessment of developer trustworthiness could inform user choice, employee actions, investment decisions, legal recourse, and emerging governance regimes.
* Science (2021) Vol 374, Issue 6573, pp. 1327-1329
Recently, there have been breakthroughs in computer vision ("CV") models that are more generalizable with the advent of models such as CLIP and ALIGN. In this paper, we analyze CLIP and highlight some of the challenges such models pose. CLIP reduces the need for task specific training data, potentially opening up many niche tasks to automation. CLIP also allows its users to flexibly specify image classification classes in natural language, which we find can shift how biases manifest. Additionally, through some preliminary probes we find that CLIP can inherit biases found in prior computer vision systems. Given the wide and unpredictable domain of uses for such models, this raises questions regarding what sufficiently safe behaviour for such systems may look like. These results add evidence to the growing body of work calling for a change in the notion of a 'better' model--to move beyond simply looking at higher accuracy at task-oriented capability evaluations, and towards a broader 'better' that takes into account deployment-critical features such as different use contexts, and people who interact with the model when thinking about model deployment.
* arXiv admin note: substantial text overlap with arXiv:2103.00020
We introduce Codex, a GPT language model fine-tuned on publicly available code from GitHub, and study its Python code-writing capabilities. A distinct production version of Codex powers GitHub Copilot. On HumanEval, a new evaluation set we release to measure functional correctness for synthesizing programs from docstrings, our model solves 28.8% of the problems, while GPT-3 solves 0% and GPT-J solves 11.4%. Furthermore, we find that repeated sampling from the model is a surprisingly effective strategy for producing working solutions to difficult prompts. Using this method, we solve 70.2% of our problems with 100 samples per problem. Careful investigation of our model reveals its limitations, including difficulty with docstrings describing long chains of operations and with binding operations to variables. Finally, we discuss the potential broader impacts of deploying powerful code generation technologies, covering safety, security, and economics.
On October 14th, 2020, researchers from OpenAI, the Stanford Institute for Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence, and other universities convened to discuss open research questions surrounding GPT-3, the largest publicly-disclosed dense language model at the time. The meeting took place under Chatham House Rules. Discussants came from a variety of research backgrounds including computer science, linguistics, philosophy, political science, communications, cyber policy, and more. Broadly, the discussion centered around two main questions: 1) What are the technical capabilities and limitations of large language models? 2) What are the societal effects of widespread use of large language models? Here, we provide a detailed summary of the discussion organized by the two themes above.
Large language models have a range of beneficial uses: they can assist in prose, poetry, and programming; analyze dataset biases; and more. However, their flexibility and generative capabilities also raise misuse concerns. This report discusses OpenAI's work related to the release of its GPT-2 language model. It discusses staged release, which allows time between model releases to conduct risk and benefit analyses as model sizes increased. It also discusses ongoing partnership-based research and provides recommendations for better coordination and responsible publication in AI.
In this paper, we argue that competitive pressures could incentivize AI companies to underinvest in ensuring their systems are safe, secure, and have a positive social impact. Ensuring that AI systems are developed responsibly may therefore require preventing and solving collective action problems between companies. We note that there are several key factors that improve the prospects for cooperation in collective action problems. We use this to identify strategies to improve the prospects for industry cooperation on the responsible development of AI.
We analyze and reframe AI progress. In addition to the prevailing metrics of performance, we highlight the usually neglected costs paid in the development and deployment of a system, including: data, expert knowledge, human oversight, software resources, computing cycles, hardware and network facilities, development time, etc. These costs are paid throughout the life cycle of an AI system, fall differentially on different individuals, and vary in magnitude depending on the replicability and generality of the AI solution. The multidimensional performance and cost space can be collapsed to a single utility metric for a user with transitive and complete preferences. Even absent a single utility function, AI advances can be generically assessed by whether they expand the Pareto (optimal) surface. We explore a subset of these neglected dimensions using the two case studies of Alpha* and ALE. This broadened conception of progress in AI should lead to novel ways of measuring success in AI, and can help set milestones for future progress.