Why AI Has Graduated Into the Boardroom

Would You Trust A Robot Making Decisions About Your Job?

0
693
The mesmerizing AI panel. L to R: Jacqui Stewart, Innovation Manager, iCube, Michael Michie, CIO, TripleOKLaw, Collins Omwenga, AI Country Plan Engagement Manager, Microsoft, Dr. Fernando Wangila, ICT Director, NTSA.
The meszmerising AI panel. L to R: Jacqui Stewart, Innovation Manager, iCube, Michael Michie, CIO, TripleOKLaw, Collins Omwenga, AI Country Plan Engagement Manager, Microsoft, Dr. Fernando Wangila, ICT Director, NTSA.

 

Can a robot replace a board of directors? This is a question CIOs, CEOs and the C-suite need to debate. As does the board of directors especially when it comes decisions with far and wide ramifications. What makes AI challenging in a boardroom could be any number of things.

But they are not as diverse as the industries would seem to anticipate. What, for instance, would AI bring to the boardroom table? Especially since it is presumed the board of directors have very human qualities that cannot be replicated by a machine. This, however, has been a discussion at board level for quite sometime in Microsoft.

Dr. Fernando Wangila, ICT Director NTSA says “There is an assumption that a robot will walk in and take you seat. No, it will not. AI is meant to help you make decisions fast. It is supposed to augment.” These decision include transparency (who keeps, uses and has access to customer information); liability (where does the buck stop with this decision; ethics (how does AI determine that which is right and good); to accountability (whose fault is it that this happened?), are governed by human mores.

It takes the human factor to programme AI. And AI subsumes it into {deep} machine learning from there using big data to execute. The more AI a business has, the more the data and the better the products and services.

The challenge with AI is that aside from raising issues of corporate governance, is that it has to be incorporated into the business strategy, serve a purpose, have a reason for existing and needs deep research. It needs a CEO who has a clear grasp on what AI represents, and a trained workforce.

AI in the boardroom is after all still business, and not an IT issue as such. Boards process huge chunks of information that they then used to govern. This would go beyond a form of Asana or e-board to virtually connect the paperwork amongst the powers that be.

And as Collins Omwenga, AI Country Plan Engagement Manager, Microsoft says, “It is easy to have doubts about AI such as if data sets are wrong.” Corporate laws and AI are yet to meet. In fact, it seems the two are so far apart no one knows who needs to strike first; legal or tech. He ends it on an enquiring note. “What’s the legality of AI in the boardroom. Can it even be a board member?”

Do you have a story that you think would interest our readers?
Write to us editorial@cio.co.ke

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.