Skip to content

The AI Brussels effect: there’s an Act for that.

Dr. Anusha Moonshiram

Vice-President, Women Cyber Force

What is the Brussels Effect?

The Brussels effect is the process of globalizing the rules for the single market, mandating international companies working with EU member states to comply with its standards and regulations. The Brussels effect can be observed in competition law, the general data protection regulation (GDPR), food safety, the tobacco products directive and the environmental protection. The term “Brussels effect” is the title of a very interesting book authored by Dr. Anu Bradford, a very distinguished Professor of Law.

AI, what else?

One recent example of the Brussels effect is the EU AI Act.

The EU AI Act proposes a legal framework for the regulation of AI systems in the EU and it applies to all AI systems on the EU market or used in the EU, regardless of its place of development.  

The risk-based EU AI Act reveals the Brussels effect as it creates a hierarchy of AI systems based on their potential impact defined in four risk levels: unacceptable, high, limited and minimal.  In perspective, AI systems that create deepfakes are unacceptable risks, while examples of a high-risk AI system would be medical diagnosis or autonomous vehicles.

The year 2023 is the expected finalization of the EU AI Act, which represents a very significant piece of legislation that will have a major impact on the development and use of AI in the EU.

The program will be dedicated to discussing the greatest challenges businesses face across sectors and the technologies that are at the forefront of an intriguing yet needed transformation to grow sustainable, be more resilient, drive performance and anticipate future challenges. The event will consist of an exhibition area featuring international delegations, tech companies and innovative entrepreneurs as well as insightful conferences to tackle topical challenges. It will also enable the audience to participate in matchmaking and targeted networking sessions, through the use of the event application. Specific presentations will be hosted on exhibitors’ booths and several side-events will occur, including the Mastermind challenge for startups and a great after-party the first evening.

Comparing the EU AI Act and the US NIST AI RMF

In March 2023, the US federal agency, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) proposed an AI Risk Management Framework (RMF) as a voluntary framework that provides guidance and best practices for trustworthiness considerations in the design, development, use and evaluation of AI products, services and systems. The NIST RMF proposes four RMF functions: govern, map, measure and manage, relying on existing NIST standards and guidelines to support the implementation of risk management measures. It puts a high focus on the technical and security aspects of AI.

In comparison, the EU AI Act introduces new requirements and obligations for AI providers and users, such as transparency, human oversight, quality management, data governance, and post-market supervision. It is a proposed regulation that aims to ensure that AI systems respect the safety and fundamental rights of people and businesses, focusing more on the ethical and legal aspects of AI.

Ultimately, as one compares the EU AI Act, and the US NIST AI RMF, it depends on one’s preference. If one values innovation, flexibility and competitiveness, the US NIST AI RMF would be the preferred choice. On the other hand, if one values trust and transparency in AI systems, the EU AI act would makes more sense as it aims to create a clear and consistent legal framework for AI developers and users across the EU, requiring human oversight, data quality, information provision, and conformity assessment for high-risk AI systems.

Our Networking Event: at Urban, Luxembourg City on September 13th 2023

Is your human neural network architecture getting more and more curious on AI? Would you like to share your brilliant ideas and innovative thoughts about the EU AI Act? What about on Japan AI Act, the Brazil AI bill or China AI regulation? Go for it! We are ready for you! Please book your calendar and sign up now for our networking event at Urban in Luxembourg City on September 13th starting at 6pm.

Go ahead. Please don’t wait up!

We will see you there!