As artificial intelligence (AI) technology is seeing an explosion in interest and use cases in government, the governors of Pennsylvania and Virginia last week issued executive orders that aim to create baselines of policy for development of generative AI applications.

Both Pennsylvania Gov. Josh Shapiro and Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin issued executive orders Sept. 20. for implementation of new standards for the use of Gen-AI technology, as well as carrying out training programs for government employees in AI tech.

“Virginia is a leader in technology and will stay a leader in technology. The increasing use of AI, especially generative AI, offers tremendous opportunities to transform the way we serve all Virginians, from launching innovative personalized education tools to improving customer service and beyond,” Gov. Youngkin said in a press release.

“At the same time, we must ensure that these AI products and technologies have appropriate standards and guardrails to protect individual privacy rights in a transparent manner. Our Executive Directive tackles both: seizing the opportunities AI presents while recognizing and mitigating the risks,” the Virginia governor said.

Similarly, Pennsylvania Gov. Shapiro signed an executive order that would provide state employees guidance on how to use AI technology.

“We can’t ignore new technology – we have to educate ourselves and be proactive to minimize the risks and maximize the benefits of innovation and that’s the approach my Administration is taking here in Pennsylvania,” Gov. Shapiro said in a press release.

“This new Executive Order will help us responsibly integrate this emerging technology into some of our government operations so we can move at the speed of business and better serve Pennsylvanians. With strong partners like Carnegie Mellon, Pennsylvania has the potential to become a leader in responsible, ethical use of generative artificial intelligence,” the Pennsylvania governor said.

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