Richard Robinson, the founder of fast-growing British tech startup RobinAI, has voiced his support for a light-touch approach to artificial intelligence (AI) regulation in the United Kingdom. In an interview with City A.M., Robinson emphasized the importance of fostering innovation in the AI industry to facilitate the emergence of global technology leaders.
Robinson’s perspective on AI regulation
Robinson, a former lawyer at Clifford Chance, cautioned against creating a specialized regulatory body solely focused on AI, suggesting that overregulation could stifle innovation. He highlighted the presence of leading AI companies in the UK and advocated for a regulatory framework that allows these companies to thrive while managing risks through existing mechanisms.
The British government is currently deliberating on the regulatory framework for AI, aiming for a balanced approach that promotes innovation while addressing potential risks. Recent announcements indicate a willingness to leverage existing regulatory bodies, such as Ofcom and the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), to oversee AI activities with agility.
RobinAI’s contribution to the legal industry
RobinAI, utilizing its ‘AI legal assistant,’ has made significant strides in revolutionizing contract negotiations, boasting an 85% acceleration. Originally designed for in-house legal teams, RobinAI’s solution has garnered global clients across various sectors, including insurance, financial services, and construction.
Following a successful Series B funding round of $26 million led by Singaporean firm Temasek, RobinAI is poised for expansion into the US and Singapore markets. The infusion of capital will also support the development of new products and enhancements to existing models, enabling broader application across contracts and languages.
Prime Minister Rishi Sunak has lauded startups like RobinAI for their transformative impact on the legal profession, aligning with his vision to position the UK as a science and tech superpower by 2030. While emphasizing the importance of innovation, concerns have been raised regarding the potential consequences of insufficient regulation in the AI sector.
Balancing innovation and regulation
While advocating for a pro-innovation stance, Robinson acknowledged the need to address potential risks associated with AI technology. The government’s establishment of an AI Safety Institute reflects a proactive approach to mitigate these concerns, striking a balance between fostering innovation and safeguarding against potential threats.
Drawing a parallel with the United States, Robinson underscored the historical success of American tech giants like Apple, Google, and Microsoft, attributing their achievements to a culture of embracing innovation. He expressed a desire for the UK to join the ranks of global tech leaders through a conducive regulatory environment that encourages innovation.