Ethical AI – The global context: Singapore

In recent years numerous companies, governments, human rights commissions, NGOs and academic institutions around the world have developed and publicised AI ethics principles and frameworks, however there is not yet a single international standard.
Singapore has been a significant contributor to the global discussion on the ethics of AI – recently releasing three documents for trade associations and chambers, professional bodies, and interest groups for discussion, and adaption for their own use.
In early 2019, Singapore’s Personal Data Protection Commission (PDPC) released Asia’s first edition of the Model AI Governance Framework (Model Framework) for broader consultation, adoption and feedback.

On 21 January 2020, the PDPC released the second edition of the Model Framework.

It provides guidance to private sector organizations deploying AI at scale on how to do so in a responsible manner. The Model Framework translates ethical principles into implementable practices, applicable to a common AI deployment process.

It covers four key areas:

Internal governance structures and measures
Determining the level of human involvement in AI-augmented decision-making
Operations management
Stakeholder interaction and communication
Since then Singapore has released the Implementation and Self-Assessment Guide for Organisations (ISAGO). Intended as a companion guide to the Model Framework, the ISAGO aims to help organisations assess the alignment of their AI governance practices with the Model Framework. It also provides an extensive list of useful industry examples and practices to help organisations implement the Model Framework.
Lastly, complementing the Model Framework and ISAGO is a Compendium of Use Cases (Compendium) that demonstrates how local and international organisations across different sectors and sizes implemented or aligned their AI governance practices with all sections of the Model Framework. The Compendium also illustrates how the featured organisations have effectively put in place accountable AI governance practices and benefitted from the use of AI in their line of business.

Check these documents out using the links below:


  • Access the second edition of the Model Framework here and the primer here.
  • Access the ISAGO here.
  • Access the Compendium here.