AIF Foundation convenes business leaders with lawmakers to focus on AI
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3D rendering of female robot artificial intelligence concept.
To maintain global competitiveness, innovation is key

Leading companies that both develop technology and use technology to support their businesses convened Tuesday with the AIF Foundation for a discussion on artificial intelligence (AI). The event was part of AIF Foundation’s Lunch & Learn series of roundtable discussions on key business issues.

The goal was to share information and concrete examples of how AI can transform businesses and power Florida’s economy forward. Lawmakers from the House and Senate were invited to join in on the conversation.

While different perspectives were shared, there was general consensus on key takeaways, according to participants in the room. For one, AI, particularly generative AI, is largely unknown and understood by the average American. And therefore, it’s not uncommon for Americans to fear what they do not know.

Two, AI has the potential to transform the way Florida businesses operate by unlocking data sets and automating difficult tasks. AI increases system efficiencies, enabling users to improve functionality and response times.

“This is as large of a fundamental shift to our industry as something like electricity,” said Chris Hein, director of customer engineering at Google. “Where AI has gotten to in the past few years, we are starting to see the seeds of it take shape.”

One health care executive at the roundtable offered an example of how AI is used to enhance customer engagement and resolve issues with insurance claims. “The technology effectively breaks down barriers and obstacles to help our team do better what they do best,” he shared.

Three, there is consensus that a regulatory framework could help prevent bad actors from misusing technology. That said, both producers of technology and users of AI agree that we must tread carefully.

“What I am nervous about today is developing an EU sort of technology regime. The way that the Europeans regulate tech has regulated them out of existence,” said Zach Lilly, deputy director of state and federal Affairs at NetChoice. “They declared they did not want to be the leader in AI – they wanted to be the leader in AI regulation.”

Conservative thought leaders like Sal Nuzzo, senior vice president of The James Madison Institute, warn against overreaching policies.

“Do not let your desire to be in the regulatory space hamper your desire to regulate in a way that is not effective five years from now,” said Nuzzo. “Specifically, we do not feel there is a role for local governments to regulate AI in any way, shape, or form as we’ve seen it thus far, especially in the state of Florida.”

Adam Basford, vice president of governmental affairs of Associated Industries of Florida, said AIF and its Foundation will continue to work with business leaders, legislators and those in the technology industry toward policy solutions that will advance rather than hinder innovation.

“By bringing together some of Florida’s top businesses to both demonstrate the value of AI to Florida’s future, while advocating for meaningful policy solutions, we can ensure that Florida remains the national leader in technology, free enterprise and opportunity, while maintaining our nation’s global competitiveness,” said Basford.

Peter Schorsch

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises Media and is the publisher of, INFLUENCE Magazine, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. Previous to his publishing efforts, Peter was a political consultant to dozens of congressional and state campaigns, as well as several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella. Follow Peter on Twitter @PeterSchorschFL.


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