How artificial intelligence could transform government

Cognitive technologies have the potential to revolutionize the public sector—and save billions of dollars

Can “smart” technology make government, well, smarter? It’s already happening: Through AI-based applications, developers are looking to transform the public sector by automating tasks and much more. But for optimal gain, agencies must make tough choices about where and how to introduce new technologies.

Artificial intelligence already helps run government, with cognitive applications doing everything from reducing backlogs and cutting costs to handling tasks we can’t easily do on our own, such as predicting fraudulent transactions and identifying criminal suspects via facial recognition. Indeed, while we expect AI-based technology in the years ahead to fundamentally transform how public-sector employees get work done—eliminating some jobs, redesigning countless others, and even creating entirely new professions1—it’s already changing the nature of many jobs and revolutionizing facets of government operations.

Agencies today face new choices about whether some work should be fully automated, divided among people and machines, or performed by people but enhanced by machines. Our latest report, AI-augmented government, conservatively estimates that simply automating tasks that computers already routinely do could free up 96.7 million federal government working hours annually, potentially saving $3.3 billion. At the high end, we estimate that AI technology could free up as many as 1.2 billion working hours every year, saving $41.1 billion. Read more

William D. Eggers, David Schatsky and Dr. Peter Viechnicki - Deloitte - 26 April 2016

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