Shanghai Publishes First-Ever Humanoid Robot Governance Guidelines

Led by the Shanghai Law Society, the guidelines enshrine that humanoid robots need to be designed with risk and emergency response mechanisms

Ben Wodecki, Junior Editor - AI Business

July 9, 2024

2 Min Read
Fourier's GR-1 humanoid robots on display at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) in Shanghai
STR/AFP via Getty Images

Chinese AI and legal groups have published the first-ever governance guidelines for humanoid robots, emphasizing commitments to design these systems with human safety in mind.

The Guidelines for the Governance of Humanoid Robots are the first governance rules covering humanoid robotics. 

They were published at the World Artificial Intelligence Conference (WAIC) 2024 in Shanghai and jointly signed by the Shanghai Law Society, the Shanghai AI Industry Association, the Shanghai AI Standardization Technical Committee and the Shanghai Court Digital Economy Judiciary Research and Practice Base.

The new governance initiative is designed to provide businesses and organizations developing humanoid robots with guidelines to ensure responsible development.

The guidelines include measures for establishing risk procedures and emergency response mechanisms in case any issues with a humanoid robot arise. The signatories want to ensure humanoid robots “do not threaten human security.”

The guidelines state that humanoid robots must protect human dignity. Companies developing humanoid robots must also provide training on the ethical and lawful use of their machines.

The signatories hope to ensure humanoid robots are designed to be convenient to all humanity.

Related:Tesla Optimus Humanoid Robot Draws Crowds at World AI Conference

Humanoid robots were at the center of the event in Shanghai. Qinglong from Humanoid Robots and Tesla’s latest version of Optimus were both on display at WAIC.

China itself is looking to take a lead in robotics. The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology identified humanoid robots as an “important new engine of economic growth” by 2027.

As the humanoid robot industry expands, the group behind the governance document wants to ensure the technology and related products are deployed safely.

To widen nascent governance efforts in this space, the group called for the establishment of a global framework related to humanoid robots as well as a think tank to come up with concepts for governing machines.

About the Author(s)

Ben Wodecki

Junior Editor - AI Business

Ben Wodecki is the junior editor of AI Business, covering a wide range of AI content. Ben joined the team in March 2021 as assistant editor and was promoted to junior editor. He has written for The New Statesman, Intellectual Property Magazine, and The Telegraph India, among others.

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