Terms of Reference of the Government of Canada Advisory Council on Artificial Intelligence

1. Objective

To create more jobs for Canadians; to further Canada's position as a global leader in artificial intelligence (AI) development and research; to better support entrepreneurs and scale ups; to ensure Canadians have the education and skills they need to succeed in a changing economy.

2. Mandate

The mandate of the Government of Canada Advisory Council on Artificial Intelligence (the Advisory Council) will be to build on Canada's strengths in AI, to identify new opportunities in the AI sector and to make recommendations to the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and the Government of Canada more broadly including but not limited to:

  1. How to ensure Canadians benefit from the growth of the AI sector.
  2. How to harness AI to create more jobs for Canadians, to attract and retain world-leading AI talent, to ensure more Canadians have the skills and training they need for jobs in the AI sector; and to use Canada's leadership in AI research and development to create economic growth that benefits all Canadians.

3. Program of Work

  1. The Advisory Council will be a central reference point to help inform the Government of Canada's development of AI-related policy. The work of the Advisory Council will build on the Pan-Canadian AI Strategy, which aims to increase the number of highly-skilled researchers and graduates and to enhance Canada's research capabilities in the AI sector. The Program of Work of the Advisory Council includes, but is not limited to:
    1. Monitor the development of Canada's AI sector; advise the Government of Canada on innovative approaches to developing applied AI, basic research and development, intellectual property retention, commercialization, collaboration, adoption, marketplace frameworks, talent and scale-ups;
    2. Advise the Government of Canada on opportunities and best practices in the AI sector that will benefit Canadians;
    3. Inform government policy in AI-related fields and in the integration of AI into a variety of sectors.
  2. The Advisory Council may establish Working Group(s) to advance specific areas of its mandate as set out as illustrative lists under section 3(a).
  3. The Advisory Council will provide advice on the work flowing from the Global Partnership on AI (GPAI), which aims to support and guide the responsible adoption of AI with like-minded international partners that is human centric and grounded in human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation and economic growth.
  4. The Advisory Council will support the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development and the Government of Canada more broadly on Canada's AI engagement in various international fora such as the G7/G20, the OECD, the World Economic Forum, as well as with provinces, territories and municipalities.
  5. In carrying out its mandate, the Advisory Council may occasionally be asked to provide or contribute to reports, and issue discussion papers on options, recommendations, and advice.
  6. Acknowledging that AI is evolving, the Program of Work will be reviewed annually and updated in light of new challenges and opportunities.

4. Organizational structure

  1. The Advisory Council will draw on Canada's AI expertise from industry, civil society, academia, and government.
  2. The decision to nominate, consider, and appoint members and Chair is based on expertise, accomplishments and leadership in AI and applied AI.
  3. Members will participate on the Council in a personal and voluntary capacity and not as a representative of any organization with which they may or may not be affiliated.
  4. The Government of Canada's support for the Advisory Council will be led by the Department of Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada in collaboration with the Departments of Global Affairs Canada, Treasury Board Secretariat, Privy Council Office and other federal departments, and partners.

5. Frequency of Meetings

  1. Beginning in 2019, the Advisory Council will meet on a monthly basis or as-needed either in person, or via teleconference/videoconference with a focus on its Program of Work.
  2. Meeting frequency may vary depending on operational requirements.

6. Consultations and Stakeholder Engagement

  1. The Advisory Council may invite individuals, and/or organizations – whether public or private – to have observer status at meetings, as deemed appropriate.
  2. Consultations may be conducted with external stakeholders from industry, civil society and academia, as well as with observers to incorporate broader Canadian perspectives into fulfilling the mandate of the Advisory Council.

7. Terms of Service

Members of the Advisory Council are appointed for a period of two (2) years, with the possibility of renewal.