Artificial Intelligence Primer: What is Needed to Maximize AI’s Economic, Social, and Trade Opportunities

Artificial Intelligence Primer: What is Needed to Maximize AI’s Economic, Social, and Trade Opportunities. Brookings Institution. Joshua P. Meltzer. May 13, 2019

Artificial intelligence (AI) has the potential to transform economic growth, commerce, and trade, affecting the types of jobs that are available and skills that are needed. The United States, China, Japan, Germany, the United Kingdom, France, and others have recognized the opportunity and are supporting AI research and development as well as preparing their workforce.

For AI to develop also requires an enabling environment that includes new regulation in areas such as AI ethics and data access and revisiting existing laws and regulation in areas such as privacy and intellectual property (IP) rights to ensure that they work for AI. In addition, AI development requires an international agenda to avoid unnecessary regulatory heterogeneity that creates barriers to data access and use and impedes the global diffusion of AI products. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 26 pages].

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Dealing with the Offshore Economy

Dealing with the Offshore Economy. Atlantic Council.  Alan Riley. April 2, 2019

Given that offshore tax havens are largely located in small, independent states or self-governing territories, it could be assumed that they have little connection to OECD states and major financial centers such as London and New York. This is not the case. The so-called tax havens are in fact part of a much larger network of financial and corporate services that depends on lawyers, accountants, and bankers located in major Western cities. Only one part of the havens’ business actually involves providing lower tax rates to individual foreign account holders.

These techniques originally developed to assist American executives and Belgian dentists, and later multinational corporations, to limit their exposure— sometimes lawfully, sometimes unlawfully—to their respective tax authorities. Today, they’re increasingly deployed to flows of tainted capital from developing countries, helping those funds transit from their home jurisdictions and ultimately to the West.

There are more capital flows into the offshore world from OECD states than from developing countries. The argument of this paper, however, is that while OECD origin capital flows erode the tax base and some of the flows amount to illegal tax evasion, the overall effect of the money coming from developing countries, especially the tainted flows, is more damaging from both an economic and a security perspective.

In other words, the West, with its rule of law and creation of the Western-governed offshore economy, has given corrupt elites in developing countries the tools and capacity to avoid ever establishing the rule of law in their own countries. They are the beneficiaries of the West’s firmly-established rule of law and can leverage that advantage against their own people to ensure that they never benefit from the rule of law themselves. This is the rule of law paradox. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 24 pages].

Prosecutor Priorities, Challenges, and Solutions

Prosecutor Priorities, Challenges, and Solutions. RAND Corporation. Daniel S. Lawrence et al. April 18, 2019.

State and local prosecutors face an ever-increasing array of challenges and responsibilities, including recruiting and retaining talented and diverse prosecutors and handling, storing, and using growing bodies of evidence generated through modern technology. In March 2018, the Priority Criminal Justice Needs Initiative convened an expert panel to identify priority needs and solutions for improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the prosecutorial component of the criminal justice system. During the workshop, participants explored needs relating to staffing and resources, digital information, organizational data, litigation strategies, accountability, and partnerships and collaboration. High-priority needs identified for action included developing better training resources and tools for the assessment of staffing needs, researching promising practices for responding to witness intimidation and tampering, and examining the effectiveness of plea and diversion options currently in use. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 28 pages].

Data Protection Law: An Overview

Data Protection Law: An Overview.  Congressional Research Service. Stephen P. Mulligan, Wilson C. Freeman, Chris D. Linebaugh. March 25, 2019

Recent high-profile data breaches and other concerns about how third parties protect the privacy of individuals in the digital age have raised national concerns over legal protections of Americans’ electronic data. Intentional intrusions into government and private computer networks and inadequate corporate privacy and cybersecurity practices have exposed the personal information of millions of Americans to unwanted recipients. At the same time, internet connectivity has increased and varied in form in recent years. Americans now transmit their personal data on the internet at an exponentially higher rate than in the past, and their data are collected, cultivated, and maintained by a growing number of both “consumer facing” and “behind the scenes” actors such as data brokers. As a consequence, the privacy, cybersecurity and protection of personal data have emerged as a major issue for congressional consideration. 

[PDF format, 79 pages].

The Principles on Commercial Transparency in Public Contracts

The Principles on Commercial Transparency in Public Contracts. Center for Global Development. The Working Group on Commercial Transparency in Public Contracts. March 7, 2019

Every year, governments worldwide sign contracts worth trillions of dollars. They buy textbooks and fighter planes, hire consultants, commission firms to run railways and build bridges, take out loans and give guarantees, grant mining concessions, and issue licenses to use the public airwaves. Each time, legal documents specify who will pay how much to whom for what. These contracts commit taxpayer resources and national wealth, often for many years. They help determine the quality of vital government services as well as the financing that governments will have in the future. Citizens should know what is in those contracts—not least, to be able to hold governments to account. But they can only do so if the contracts are published. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[PDF format, 32 pages].

Breaking Down Proposals for Privacy Legislation: How Do They Regulate?

Breaking Down Proposals for Privacy Legislation: How Do They Regulate? Brookings Institution. Cameron F. Kerry. March 8, 2019

The “discussion drafts” of baseline privacy bills released late last year offer a glimpse of the taxonomy of issues up for debate:

  • What is the regulatory model?
  • What kinds of data are covered?
  • What sectors and what entities?
  • What rights do individuals have?
  • What obligations do businesses have in processing data?
  • How are these rights enforced—by what agency and with what powers?
  • How is pre-emption handled?

The question of the regulatory model is the keystone that overarches these and holds the rest together. Several of the draft bills present concrete signs of an emerging shift in the underlying model for privacy regulation in the current discussion, from one based on consumer choice to another focused on business behavior in handling data. This paper focuses on this key element of the taxonomy—how proposals reflect this shifting paradigm and how the change affects other aspects of privacy protection. [Note: contains copyrighted material].

[HTML format, various paging].

Exploring New Legal Migration Pathways: Lessons from Pilot Projects

Exploring New Legal Migration Pathways: Lessons from Pilot Projects. Migration Policy Institute. Kate Hooper. February 2019

As EU Member States begin to embark on a new set of legal migration pilot projects with countries in Africa, they would do well to assess the mixed results of earlier bilateral partnerships. Arrangements that offer would-be migrants temporary training or work placements in the destination country hold promise: They encourage skills development useful upon return while also helping employers fill gaps and potentially serving as an alternative to illegal migration.
This Transatlantic Council on Migration report reviews the limitations of past pilot projects involving countries in Europe, Africa, and the Asia Pacific, with an eye to making future ones more successful. The author offers a range of recommendations for how policymakers should consider labor-market needs and development goals in order to implement effective legal migration partnerships. [Note: contains copyrighted material].


[PDF format, 26 pages].