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New Report on the Regulation of Artificial Intelligence

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Everybody seems to be talking about artificial intelligence (AI). Some people laud its possibilities, whereas others envisage nightmare scenarios where robots take over. But what is AI exactly and how are countries dealing with it?

Artificial Intelligence. Photo by Flickr user 6eo tech. Jan. 26, 2019. Used under Creative Commons license,

The Oxford Dictionary defines AI as “the theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence, such as visual perception, speech recognition, decision-making, and translation between languages.” In a recently published report, ”Regulation of Artificial Intelligence,” the Law Library of Congress looks at the emerging regulatory and policy landscape surrounding AI, including guidelines, ethics codes, and actions by and statements from governments and their agencies, in jurisdictions around the world. An international part deals with approaches that United Nations agencies and regional organizations have taken towards AI. The country surveys look at various legal issues, including data protection and privacy, transparency, human oversight, surveillance, public administration and services, autonomous vehicles, and lethal autonomous weapons systems (LAWS). However, the most advanced regulations were found in the area of autonomous vehicles, in particular for the testing of such vehicles. The report includes three maps on national AI strategies, a country’s position on LAWS, and the testing of autonomous vehicles. As the regulation of AI is still in its early stages and constantly evolving, this report offers a snapshot of the legal situation at the time the report was written (January 2019). Updates will be provided on the Global Legal Monitor (GLM) website.

If you are attending the 112th Annual American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Conference in Washington, D.C. from July 13, 2019, until July 16, 2019, and want to know more about the regulation of AI, we recommend attending our program “The Age of AI: Emerging Regulatory Landscape Around the World” on July 15. Don’t forget to also check out the other presentations by Law Library of Congress staff.

You can search the Current Legal Topics or Comprehensive Index of Legal Reports for additional reports from the Law Library. To receive alerts when new reports are published, you can subscribe to email updates and the RSS feed for Law Library Reports (click the “subscribe” button on the Law Library’s website).


  1. This is a wonderful. I live on the West Coast. I look forward to your eventually being able live stream (like the Brookings) or even just posting videos of some of your events. Thanks for keeping all Americans informed.

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