Watsonx.governance, developed by IBM, is an AI tool that brings transparency, responsibility, and ethical decision-making to organisations and businesses, leveraging AI in their daily operations.
AI governance refers to the framework, policies, and processes established to oversee and manage the deployment, development, and use of artificial intelligence (AI) systems within an organisation, business, or larger societal landscape. As AI technologies become increasingly integrated into various aspects of business, government, and daily life, the need for effective governance becomes paramount.
To help business leaders and executives, IBM has introduced the governance vertical of its AI and data platform, called Watsonx.governance, which is planned to be generally available in early December.
As the company describes it, Watsonx.governance is a one-stop-shop for businesses that are struggling to deploy and manage both LLM and ML models, giving businesses the tools, they need to automate AI governance processes, monitor their models, and take corrective action, all with increased visibility. Its ability to translate regulations into enforceable policies will only become more essential for enterprises as new AI regulation takes hold worldwide.
Kareem Yusuf, Ph.D, Senior Vice President, Product Management and Growth, IBM Software, says: "Company boards and CEOs are looking to reap the rewards from today's more powerful AI models, but the risks due to a lack of transparency and inability to govern these models have been holding them back.”
Watsonx by IBM is an AI and data platform that includes an enterprise studio for AI builders and an open, hybrid, and governed data store. Watsonx.governance is one of three software products in the IBM watsonx AI and data platform, along with a set of AI assistants, designed to help enterprises scale and accelerate the impact of AI.
According to Mckinsey Global Institute, data-driven organisations are not only 23 times more likely to acquire customers, but they’re also six times as likely to retain customers and 19 times more likely to be profitable. What is all this process is governed using an AI tool?
AI governance encompasses ethical considerations, transparency, accountability, and compliance with legal and regulatory standards. It involves defining guidelines for the responsible use of AI, addressing potential biases, ensuring data privacy, and establishing mechanisms for monitoring and auditing AI systems.
AI governance plays a pivotal role in addressing real-time challenges and ensuring responsible AI practices across various domains. In the financial sector, real-time AI governance is essential to monitor algorithmic trading, detect anomalies, and mitigate potential risks swiftly. Through continuous monitoring, AI governance tools can analyse vast datasets, identify patterns, and trigger alerts in real-time, allowing financial institutions to maintain market integrity and compliance.
In the healthcare industry, real-time AI governance is crucial for ensuring patient safety and data privacy. AI algorithms are increasingly being utilised for diagnostic purposes and patient care. AI governance tools enable healthcare providers to monitor these algorithms in real-time, ensuring that they adhere to ethical standards, avoid biases, and provide accurate diagnoses. This real-time oversight enhances the reliability of AI applications in healthcare, fostering trust among practitioners and patients alike.
Watsonx.governance: Building trust in GenAI
While generative AI opens avenues for innovation, it introduces new complexities and risks, such as unverified training data and the lack of explainability in outputs. Watsonx.governance equips organisations with a comprehensive toolkit to manage risks, enhance transparency, and anticipate compliance with evolving AI regulations.
It also empowers businesses to manage, monitor, and govern AI models effectively, regardless of the sources, thus ensuring a responsible and transparent approach to AI adoption. The tool's role extends beyond the technological realm to address the pressing need for AI governance in boardrooms and executive offices.
Watsonx.governance enables businesses to decipher the intricacies of AI models, shedding light on the data inputs and resulting outputs. This transparency is crucial in addressing concerns related to fair and accurate training data, explainable outputs, and the overall ethical implications of AI.
An outline of IBM’s AI solutions
In addition to Watsonx.governance, IBM Consulting has expanded its strategic expertise to help clients scale responsible AI, focusing on both automated model governance and organisational governance encompassing people, process, and technology.
In an interview with Dinis Guarda, Brendan Buckingham, Business Development Leader for Data and AI at IBM UKI said:
“IBM is intensely focussed on AI. Not just AI for AI’s sake, but AI that can be used in an enterprise to really achieve its RoI or enhance a way the enterprise works.”
The platform includes the watsonx.ai next-generation enterprise studio for AI builders and the watsonx.data open, hybrid, and governed data store. The company also recently announced intellectual property protection for its for IBM-developed watsonx models.
During the interview, Brendan also highlighted some of the use cases of watsonx, including the AI generated commentary and AI draw analysis feature in Wimbledon 2023. AI interface for HR systems was the next use case he highlighted.
He also said that IBM watsonx Assistant uses best-in-class natural language understanding (NLU) to provide easy access to HR policies and automate often-requested tasks. Stating the examples of WestBank and ABN AMRO, Brendan said that this interface improved employee experience and drove efficiency.
“The new use cases are inspiring customers to change the way they work or enhance their work”, Brendan said. Explaining IBM’s approach: “We are in an era where what you have already and how we can augment that to help you achieve your goal. This is our technical engineering approach in many cases.”
Apart from this, IBM has also collaborated with global universities and educational institutions to establish a center of excellence for Generative AI within IBM Consulting where experts and professionals can come together and train two million learners in AI by the end of 2026.
As AI regulation evolves worldwide, Watsonx.governance emerges as a crucial component in IBM's broader mission to accelerate the evolution of real estate sustainability, foster responsible AI, and shape the future of AI governance.