AIS must meet intelligibility, justifiability, and accessibility criteria, and must be subjected to democratic scrutiny, debate, and control. 1) AIS processes that make decisions affecting a person’s life, quality of life, or reputation must be intelligible to their creators. 2) The decisions made by AIS affecting a person’s life, quality of life, or reputation should always be justifiable in a language that is understood by the people who use them or who are subjected to the consequences of their use. Justification consists in making transparent the most important factors and parameters shaping the decision, and should take the same form as the justification we would demand of a human making the same kind of decision. 3) The code for algorithms, whether public or private, must always be accessible to the relevant public authorities and stakeholders for verification and control purposes. 4) The discovery of AIS operating errors, unexpected or undesirable effects, security breaches, and data leaks must imperatively be reported to the relevant public authorities, stakeholders, and those affected by the situation. 5) In accordance with the transparency requirement for public decisions, the code for decision making algorithms used by public authorities must be accessible to all, with the exception of algorithms that present a high risk of serious danger if misused. 6) For public AIS that have a significant impact on the life of citizens, citizens should have the opportunity and skills to deliberate on the social parameters of these AIS, their objectives, and the limits of their use. 7) We must at all times be able to verify that AIS are doing what they were programmed for and what they are used for. 8) Any person using a service should know if a decision concerning them or affecting them was made by an AIS. 9) Any user of a service employing chatbots should be able to easily identify whether they are interacting with an AIS or a real person. 10) Artificial intelligence research should remain open and accessible to all.
Principle: The Montreal Declaration for a Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, Dec 4, 2018

Published by University of Montreal

Related Principles

Public Empowerment

Principle: The public’s ability to understand AI enabled services, and how they work, is key to ensuring trust in the technology. Recommendations: “Algorithmic Literacy” must be a basic skill: Whether it is the curating of information in social media platforms or self driving cars, users need to be aware and have a basic understanding of the role of algorithms and autonomous decision making. Such skills will also be important in shaping societal norms around the use of the technology. For example, identifying decisions that may not be suitable to delegate to an AI. Provide the public with information: While full transparency around a service’s machine learning techniques and training data is generally not advisable due to the security risk, the public should be provided with enough information to make it possible for people to question its outcomes.

Published by Internet Society, "Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: Policy Paper" in Guiding Principles and Recommendations, Apr 18, 2017

Responsible Deployment

Principle: The capacity of an AI agent to act autonomously, and to adapt its behavior over time without human direction, calls for significant safety checks before deployment, and ongoing monitoring. Recommendations: Humans must be in control: Any autonomous system must allow for a human to interrupt an activity or shutdown the system (an “off switch”). There may also be a need to incorporate human checks on new decision making strategies in AI system design, especially where the risk to human life and safety is great. Make safety a priority: Any deployment of an autonomous system should be extensively tested beforehand to ensure the AI agent’s safe interaction with its environment (digital or physical) and that it functions as intended. Autonomous systems should be monitored while in operation, and updated or corrected as needed. Privacy is key: AI systems must be data responsible. They should use only what they need and delete it when it is no longer needed (“data minimization”). They should encrypt data in transit and at rest, and restrict access to authorized persons (“access control”). AI systems should only collect, use, share and store data in accordance with privacy and personal data laws and best practices. Think before you act: Careful thought should be given to the instructions and data provided to AI systems. AI systems should not be trained with data that is biased, inaccurate, incomplete or misleading. If they are connected, they must be secured: AI systems that are connected to the Internet should be secured not only for their protection, but also to protect the Internet from malfunctioning or malware infected AI systems that could become the next generation of botnets. High standards of device, system and network security should be applied. Responsible disclosure: Security researchers acting in good faith should be able to responsibly test the security of AI systems without fear of prosecution or other legal action. At the same time, researchers and others who discover security vulnerabilities or other design flaws should responsibly disclose their findings to those who are in the best position to fix the problem.

Published by Internet Society, "Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning: Policy Paper" in Guiding Principles and Recommendations, Apr 18, 2017


Privacy and intimacy must be protected from AIS intrusion and data acquisition and archiving systems (DAAS). 1) Personal spaces in which people are not subjected to surveillance or digital evaluation must be protected from the intrusion of AIS and data acquisition and archiving systems (DAAS). 2) The intimacy of thoughts and emotions must be strictly protected from AIS and DAAS uses capable of causing harm, especially uses that impose moral judgments on people or their lifestyle choices. 3) People must always have the right to digital disconnection in their private lives, and AIS should explicitly offer the option to disconnect at regular intervals, without encouraging people to stay connected. 4) People must have extensive control over information regarding their preferences. AIS must not create individual preference profiles to influence the behavior of the individuals without their free and informed consent. 5) DAAS must guarantee data confidentiality and personal profile anonymity. 6) Every person must be able to exercise extensive control over their personal data, especially when it comes to its collection, use, and dissemination. Access to AIS and digital services by individuals must not be made conditional on their abandoning control or ownership of their personal data. 7) Individuals should be free to donate their personal data to research organizations in order to contribute to the advancement of knowledge. 8) The integrity of one’s personal identity must be guaranteed. AIS must not be used to imitate or alter a person’s appearance, voice, or other individual characteristics in order to damage one’s reputation or manipulate other people.

Published by University of Montreal in The Montreal Declaration for a Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, Dec 4, 2018


Every person involved in AI development must exercise caution by anticipating, as far as possible, the adverse consequences of AIS use and by taking the appropriate measures to avoid them. 1) It is necessary to develop mechanisms that consider the potential for the double use — beneficial and harmful —of AI research and AIS development (whether public or private) in order to limit harmful uses. 2) When the misuse of an AIS endangers public health or safety and has a high probability of occurrence, it is prudent to restrict open access and public dissemination to its algorithm. 3) Before being placed on the market and whether they are offered for charge or for free, AIS must meet strict reliability, security, and integrity requirements and be subjected to tests that do not put people’s lives in danger, harm their quality of life, or negatively impact their reputation or psychological integrity. These tests must be open to the relevant public authorities and stakeholders. 4) The development of AIS must preempt the risks of user data misuse and protect the integrity and confidentiality of personal data. 5) The errors and flaws discovered in AIS and SAAD should be publicly shared, on a global scale, by public institutions and businesses in sectors that pose a significant danger to personal integrity and social organization.

Published by University of Montreal in The Montreal Declaration for a Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, Dec 4, 2018


The development and use of AIS must not contribute to lessen the responsibility of human beings when decisions must be made. 1) Only human beings can be held responsible for decisions stemming from recommendations made by AIS, and the actions that proceed therefrom. 2) In all areas where a decision that affects a person’s life, quality of life, or reputation must be made, where time and circumstance permit, the final decision must be taken by a human being and that decision should be free and informed 3) The decision to kill must always be made by human beings, and responsibility for this decision must not be transferred to an AIS. 4) People who authorize AIS to commit a crime or an offence, or demonstrate negligence by allowing AIS to commit them, are responsible for this crime or offence. 5) When damage or harm has been inflicted by an AIS, and the AIS is proven to be reliable and to have been used as intended, it is not reasonable to place blame on the people involved in its development or use.

Published by University of Montreal in The Montreal Declaration for a Responsible Development of Artificial Intelligence, Dec 4, 2018