Published

October 04, 2017

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Although it does most of its work behind the scenes, from car navigation to computer assistants to movie recommendations to your social media feeds, artificial intelligence (AI) is becoming a deeper part of our everyday lives.

The public may not know exactly what it is, but they do think AI will have a big impact on their lives and the U.S. economy, a new poll finds.

At a recent event hosted by the U.S. Chamber’s Technology Engagement Center (C_TEC), TheBridge, and Dcode42, C_TEC shared the results of a poll they recently conducted with Morning Consult.

Learn more: Explore the poll's findings.

More than half of the respondents admitted that they knew “not much” or “nothing at all” about Artificial Intelligence. One-in-three said they didn’t know there was a difference between machine learning and AI.

[Machine learning is an approach to AI, where computers are “trained” to make predictions about the world with massive data sets—“Big Data.”]

However, despite being unfamiliar with the technology’s details, 68% of respondents indicated they thought AI would be at least somewhat common in the next 5 years, and 29% described AI as inevitable.

Morning Consult poll for C_TEC. Adults most describe artificial intelligence as inevitable.

Adults most describe artificial intelligence as inevitable.

Source: Morning Consult.

With AI integrating itself in our lives, the Morning Consult poll indicated respondents think that government has a role to play in its regulation regardless of the industry.

Between 27% and 31% think that government should be somewhat involved in regulating AI in health, finance, computer science, hard sciences, manufacturing, and agricultural industries. Anywhere between 21% and 29% thought that government should be very involved in regulating the same industries.

Morning Consult poll for C_TEC. Majorities say government should be at least somewhat involved in regulating the use of AI across industries, especially health.

Majorities say government should be at least somewhat involved in regulating the use of AI across industries, especially health.

Source: Morning Consult.

But as C_TEC’s Tim Day recently wrote, “We need to ensure that government leaders understand the effects regulation can have on the development of new technologies.” Often due to misunderstanding, government leaders can be prone to over regulation and over legislating that impedes the progress of the technology.

The survey indicates that more education is needed about AI in order to best utilize their potential benefits for businesses.

AI is disrupting how industries operate and engage with customers, but it presents a great opportunity to increase business efficiency and improve consumer products and services.

Though government, industry, and the public are hesitant, all can be engaged partners in this evolution.

About the authors

U.S. Chamber Staff

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