Skip to content

Bletchley Park to host UK’s AI safety summit in November

AI safety
Image credit: Gordon Bell / Shutterstock

The UK is set to host a global summit on AI safety at the start of November that will see “like-minded” nations convene to discuss the major concerns around the technology.

The first global AI safety summit will reportedly take place in the historic Bletchley Park, once a top-secret headquarters for codebreakers in the Second World War.

The summit, in addition to international allies, will also include leading academics and executives from tech firms such as OpenAI, Microsoft, Anthropic and DeepMind.

A government spokesperson said: “Our preparations and discussions with international partners are already in full flow, with Matt Clifford and Jonathan Black recently appointed as the prime minister’s representatives.

“Together they’ll spearhead talks and negotiations to make sure the summit results in the development of a shared approach to mitigating the risks of AI.”

The summit was first announced by Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in June following his meeting in the US with President Joe Biden.

Since then, the UK has shared little in the way of detail about the event. This has reportedly created confusion among diplomats from several nations, according to Politico.

According to the publication, one embassy official from a relevant nation said the stated date of early November was “pretty vague”.

The official added: “We haven’t been given much information yet… And we’re getting quite close to the date now.”

There has also been some speculation as to whether China will have a presence at the summit given recent tensions between the country and Britain’s allies.

A spokesperson for DSIT told UKTN: “As is routine for international summits of this nature, we will not speculate on potential invitees but will confirm further details soon.”

Despite criticism of the planning of the event, industry members have welcomed the concept.

“It is exciting to see the UK government prioritise becoming the global home of AI regulation,” said Sridhar Iyengar, managing director for Zoho Europe.

“As the first major global summit on AI approaches, businesses across the UK should ensure they are prioritising safe implementation of AI, as well as following guidance advised by government and policymakers.”