The Cabinet Office’s Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) has recently launched a new algorithmic transparency standard for all government and public departments.
Indeed, this national standard aims to deliver on commitments made in the National Data Strategy and National AI Strategy. By doing so, the UK also hopes to strengthen its position as a global leader in trustworthy AI.
This was put into place after the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CDEI) recommended a mandatory transparency obligation on public sector organisations that are using algorithms to support significant decisions affecting people.
Moreover, this standard was strongly supported by civil society organisations and international organisations that have always advocated for better transparency. Through this, they hope that the risks associated with algorithmic decision-making will be managed and more scrutinised in order to build public trust.
The standard will then have two tiers. The first one will include a short description of the algorithmic tool, as well as how and why it is being used, while the second will have more detailed information about how the tool works, the datasets that have been used to train the model and the level of human oversight.
Hence, the standard aims to help teams be more transparent about the way in which algorithmic tools are being used so as to support decisions, especially those affecting individuals.
The CDDO will review the standard in the following months before seeking formal endorsement from the Data Standards Authority in 2022.