To understand people’s concerns about who develops AI technologies, we asked people how concerned, if at all, they feel about different actors producing AI technologies.
We asked this in the context of hospitals asking an outside organisation to produce AI technologies that predict the risk of developing cancer from a scan, and the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) asking an outside organisation to produce AI technologies for assessing eligibility for welfare benefits.
We asked people how concerned they are about each of the following groups producing AI in each context:
not-for-profit organisations (e.g. charities)
another governmental body or department
For both the use of AI in predicting cancer from a scan, and assessing eligibility for welfare benefits, the British public are most concerned by private companies developing the technologies and least concerned by universities and academic researchers developing the technologies
For the development of AI which may be used to assist the Department for Work and Pensions in assessing eligibility for welfare benefits, the public are most concerned about private companies developing the technology, with 66% being somewhat or very concerned. Just over half, 51%, of people are somewhat or very concerned about another governmental body or department developing the technology, and 46% somewhat or very concerned about not-for-profit organisations developing the technology.
People are generally least concerned about universities or academic researchers developing this technology, with 43% being somewhat or very concerned. While this is the lowest percentage of concern compared to other stakeholders, this is still a sizable proportion of people expressing concern, which suggests the need for more trusted stakeholders to also be transparent about their role and approach to developing technologies.
Regarding the development of AI that may help healthcare professionals predict the risk of cancer from a scan, there is a very similar pattern of concerns over who develops the technology. People are most concerned with private companies developing the technology with 61% being somewhat or very concerned, followed by a governmental body (44%). People are less concerned with not-for-profit organisations and universities or academic researchers developing the technology. Overall level of concern about developers was lower for technologies that predict risk of cancer than technologies which help assess eligibility for welfare.
Figure 11 shows the extent to which people feel concerned by the following actors developing new technologies to assess eligibility for welfare benefits and predict the risk of developing cancer: private companies, governmental bodies, not-for-profit organisations and universities/academic researchers.