QU article discusses benefits and risks of integrating AI
June 01 2020 01:32 AM

Qatar University (QU) College of Law’s Centre for Law and Development has published an article under the title “Banking on AI (Artificial Intelligence): Mandating a Proactive Approach to AI regulation in the Financial Sector.”
Dr Jon Truby, Dr Rafael Brown and Dr Andrew Dahdal of the QU College of Law’s Centre for Law and Development, argue in their article that the best way to encourage a sustainable future in AI innovation in the financial sector is to support a proactive regulatory approach prior to any financial harm occurring.
The authors discussed the benefits and risks associated with integrating AI into the existing systems and processes of financial institutions. AI for financial institutions offer many benefits such as enhanced fraud detection, more accurate lending and credit assessments, stronger cybersecurity detection, and faster regulatory compliance. 
However, the authors also emphasise the need to consider AI’s inherent risks and threats. They argue that a proactive approach should implement rational regulations that embody jurisdiction-specific rules in line with carefully construed international principles.
The authors use a risk-benefit analysis framework to examine three distinct contexts in which AI can be utilised: how financial service providers use AI in relation to their clients; how financial services firms use AI in their compliance efforts and how regulators use – and may use – AI in their regulatory efforts.
According to the authors, financial intuitions are introducing a plethora of AI-driven financial services, including robo-advising, algorithmic investing and insurance/ credit assessment at a rapid pace and as a first-generation technology. 
Though governed by existing financial and data protection laws, neither the developers nor the financial institutions have significant legal obligations in any jurisdiction to follow the international principles on AI governance, which in turn have been developed to require accountability, transparency and fairness in the utilisation of AI software in the financial sphere.
The authors feel that it is prudent and timely for regulators to seriously consider the nature and scope of AI regulation in the financial services sector. They argue that the adoption of rational regulations that encourage innovation whilst ensuring adherence to international principles will significantly reduce the likelihood of development of AI-related risks into systemic problems. To accomplish it efficiently, the article suggests that policymakers intervene early with targeted, proactive but balanced regulatory approaches to AI technology in the financial sector that are consistent with emerging internationally accepted principles on AI governance. 
The article also emphasises the challenge that policymakers will face in balancing innovation with potential risks to the public good due to the AI development. In this regard, it put forwards the argument that any attempt at manipulating the future regulation of AI to preference one stakeholder at the expense of others will likely result in damaging market distortions in the financial sector.

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