What does it mean to be an AI Ethicist: An ontology of existing roles

by   Shalaleh Rismani, et al.

With the increasing adoption of Artificial Intelligence systems (AIS) in various application and the growing efforts to regulate such systems, a new set of occupations has emerged in the industry. This new set of roles take different titles and hold varying responsibilities. However, the individuals in these roles are tasked with interpreting and operationalizing best practices for developing ethical and safe AI systems. We will broadly refer to this new set of occupations as AI ethicists and recognize that they often hold a specific role in the intersection of technology development, business needs, and societal implications. In this work, we examine what it means to be an AI ethicist in the industry and propose an ontology of existing roles under this broad title along with their required competencies. We create this ontology by examining the job postings for such roles over the past two years and conduct expert interviews with fourteen individuals who currently hold such a role in the industry. The proposed ontology will inform executives and leaders who are looking to build responsible AI teams and provide educators the necessary information for creating new learning objectives and curriculum.


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