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East Riding Council Embraces Artificial Intelligence

East Riding Council has adopted a new policy on the use of Artificial Intelligence.

The policy says that GenAI may be used for work-related purposes including generating content for reports, emails, images, and all correspondence as long as it's used transparently.

Kevin Woodcock is the council's ICT Strategy Manager, he says the rate at which AI has entered the work place has been staggering and brings with it some great tools but also some risks.

A report presented to the council's Cabinet has highlighted the speed at which AI has become available in the workplace saying:

"GenAI is making its way into products and services the Council uses and consumes.  

A limited, but powerful, example of this is Microsoft Bing Copilot which is powered by  ChatGPT that will become available to all computer users in the Council.  Microsoft has  also launched premium subscription AI capability into Microsoft Office, known as  Microsoft 365 Copilot, which enables very advanced GenAI features."

"The Council is trialling Microsoft 365 Copilot and is working on a business case  that will evaluate the potential for adoption, based on improved efficiency and cost  reduction, acknowledging the significant investment which would be required."

Kevin says the idea is to enable the Council to adopt GenAI, where appropriate, but says it wont be removing humans from the workflow.

The policy document says that the aim of the new policy is to:

"ensure that staff are  fully aware of the rules concerning the use of  Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI)  Large Language Models (LLM) and the actions  that could result should there be any misuse.  

The Policy provides a framework for the use of  GenAI LLM. It is designed to ensure that the  Council’s use of GenAI is ethical, complies  with all applicable laws and regulations and  complements its existing data protection and  ICT security policies."

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