The European Commission establishes the European Artificial Intelligence Office

IRIS 2024-2:1/10

Eric Munch

European Audiovisual Observatory

On 2 February 2024, the members of the European Council unanimously approved the AI Act, after months of fierce negotiations between member states. A week earlier, on 24 January 2024, the European Commission had published a decision establishing the European Artificial Intelligence Office (the Office), which is part of the wider Commission effort to both foster the development of artificial intelligence (AI) in the internal market and ensure that the public interest remains protected.

As a part of the Commission’s Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology, the newly established Office will be overseeing advancements in AI models and acting as a single governance system for all matters AI in the European Union (EU), including by issuing guidance without duplicating the activities of other bodies, offices and agencies of the EU.

As defined by the Commission decision of 24 January 2024, additional tasks within the remit of the Office will include contributing to the strategic, coherent and effective approach of the EU to international initiatives on AI, fostering actions and policies within the Commission to reap the societal and economic benefits of AI technologies. The Office will also support the accelerated development, roll-out and use of trustworthy AI systems and applications that bring societal and economic benefits and that contribute to the competitiveness and economic growth of the EU.

Moreover, the Office will be tasked with the implementation of certain aspects of the upcoming regulation, such as developing tools, methodologies and benchmarks for evaluating the capabilities of general-purpose AI. It will also be tasked with monitoring the implementation and application of rules applying to these developments, as well as detecting the emergence of unforeseen risks and investigating possible infringements of rules. The Office will cooperate with stakeholders as well as other international organisations and other bodies, offices and agencies of the EU; it will also be involved in cross-sectoral cooperation within the Commission.



This article has been published in IRIS Legal Observations of the European Audiovisual Observatory.