A PYMNTS Company

CHATGPT In The Public Sector – Should It Be Banned?

 |  May 11, 2023

By: Albert Sánchez-Graells (How to Crack a Nut)

In ‘ChatGPT in the Public Sector – overhyped or overlooked?’ (24 Apr 2023), the Analysis and Research Team (ART) of the General Secretariat of the Council of the European Union provides a useful and accessible explanation of how ChatGPT works, as well interesting analysis of the risks and pitfalls of rushing to embed generative artificial intelligence (GenAI), and large language models (LLMs) in particular, in the functioning of the public administration.

The analysis stresses the risks stemming from ‘inaccurate, biased, or nonsensical’ GenAI outputs and, in particular, that ‘the key principles of public administration such as accountability, transparency, impartiality, or reliability need to be considered thoroughly in the [GenAI] integration process’.

The paper provides a helpful introduction to how LLMs work and their technical limitations. It then maps potential uses in the public administration, assesses the potential impact of their use on the European principles of public sector administration, and then suggests some measures to mitigate the relevant risks.

This analysis is helpful but, in my view, it is already captured by the presumption that LLMs are here to stay and that what regulators can do is just try to minimise their potential negative impacts—which implies accepting that there will remain unaddressed impacts. By referring to general principles of public administration, rather than eg the right to good administration under the EU Charter of Fundamental Rights, the analysis is also unnecessarily lenient…