Where Responsible AI meets Reality: Practitioner Perspectives on Enablers for Shifting Organizational Practices

Rakova, Bogdana; Yang, Jingying; Cramer, Henriette; Chowdhury, Rumman
Proceedings of the ACM on Human-Computer Interaction

Large and ever-evolving technology companies continue to invest more time and resources to incorporate responsible Artificial Intelligence (AI) into production-ready systems to increase algorithmic accountability. This paper examines and seeks to offer a framework for analyzing how organizational culture and structure impact the effectiveness of responsible AI initiatives in practice. We present the results of semi-structured qualitative interviews with practitioners working in industry, investigating common challenges, ethical tensions, and effective enablers for responsible AI initiatives. Focusing on major companies developing or utilizing AI, we have mapped what organizational structures currently support or hinder responsible AI initiatives, what aspirational future processes and structures would best enable effective initiatives, and what key elements comprise the transition from current work practices to the aspirational future.