OpenAI, Anthropic and Cohere held back-channel talks with Chinese state-backed groups in Geneva
US artificial intelligence companies OpenAI, Anthropic and Cohere have engaged in secret diplomacy with Chinese AI experts, amid shared concern about how the powerful technology may spread misinformation and threaten social cohesion. According to multiple people with direct knowledge, two meetings took place in Geneva in July and October last year attended by scientists and policy experts from the American AI groups, alongside representatives of Tsinghua University and other Chinese state-backed institutions.
Attendees said the talks allowed both sides to discuss the risks from the emerging technology and encourage investments in AI safety research. They added that the ultimate goal was to find a scientific path forward to safely develop more sophisticated AI technology.
“There is no way for us to set international standards around AI safety and alignment without agreement between this set of actors,” said one person present at the talks. “And if they agree, it makes it much easier to bring the others along.”