is only the latest in a string of high-profile donations to the topic. Just to keep all these straight, here’s a rundown of recent AI watchdog and public interest initiatives, backed at least in part by philanthropy:
- – While also concerned with biotechnology, nuclear weapons, and climate change, this institute’s current focus is artificial intelligence. FLI boasts highly respected researchers, and has been making research grants and building a critical mass of interest around AI risk, releasing some well-publicized open letters. It notably received $10 million from Elon Musk in 2015.
- – Led by UC Berkeley’s Stuart Russell, a prominent AI researcher and vocal advocate for responsible AI, this center launched in 2016 pooling efforts of researchers from Berkeley, Cornell and University of Michigan. Backing includes $5.5 million from the Open Philanthropy Project, and funds from the Leverhulme Trust and the Future of Life Institute.
- – This one also opened in 2016 at Cambridge University, where outspoken AI skeptic Stephen Hawking is based. It’s funded with $12 million from the Leverhulme Trust, a British research funder. The Centre draws upon talent at top UK schools, plus UC Berkeley. It’s investigating nine initial projects, such as autonomous weapons and AI policymaking.
- – An endowment launched late in 2016 at Carnegie Mellon University, a top robotics school that made news when a large number of its faculty. The endowment is backed by a $10 million gift from the law firm of the same name, and will support faculty, fellowships, scholarships, and a conference.
- – Also emerging last year, this effort comes entirely from industry—in fact, the players who stand to profit most from AI’s rapid advancement—Facebook, Google (DeepMind), Microsoft, IBM, and Amazon.
- There’s also, although this one is a huge nonprofit research company seeking to advance AI, but in a transparent and distributed way, backed by Musk, Hoffman, and others.
- (Jan 2017)
See also my Quora answer to:
- (Jan 2015)