AI for Regulation by Design (RBD) Initiative

The initiative drives collaborative effort to advance regulatory design principles. In this field, the initiative support organizations in implementing AI remedial actions based on assessment results, requiring the design of policies, procedures, and frameworks. In the burgeoning field of Regulation by Design (RBD), a comprehensive exploration of fundamental aspects, practices, limitations, and governance ramifications is paramount.

In recent years, the functional value of design has gained increasing relevance in regulatory governance theory, leading to what is generally referred to as ‘Regulation By Design’ (RBD). RBD has become a widespread practice – for example, it informs the General Data Protection Regulation and the AI Act2 – and a research field with increasing scholarly works.

However, RBD faces three types of challenges. These stem from risks associated with compliance by design, contextual limitations, or methodological uncertainty. These three challenges and limitations hinder the potential and may compromise the intended effects of RBD.

Fortunately, they can be overcome, or at least mitigated, through Digital Governance, which is the practice of implementing policies, procedures, and standards for the proper development and management of the infosphere. Digital Governance, thus, may account for the regulative function of design and steer the practices of RBD.

This “involves” identifying essential elements like objectives, regulatory bodies, methodologies, and technologies, while delineating diverse RBD approaches: encompassing compliance, value creation, and optimization through design. Moreover, it is vital to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the related challenges, including compliance risks, contextual constraints, and methodological uncertainties. In this regard, AI4People is committed to facilitating the translation of academic research into tangible implementations of regulation by design AI, through ongoing engagement with policymakers, to contribute to shaping the future of regulatory design in the digital era.

This initiative and introductory text were inspired by the paper Regulation by design: features, practices, limitations, and governance implications

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