Bank of Israel chief has AI-powered chatbot write speech, aiming to encourage use

Central bank governor Amir Yaron says emergence of artificial intelligence technologies will lead to changes in labor market, and must be embraced

Sharon Wrobel is a tech reporter for The Times of Israel.

Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron speaks at a conference in Tel Aviv, on November 29, 2022. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)
Bank of Israel Governor Amir Yaron speaks at a conference in Tel Aviv, on November 29, 2022. (Avshalom Sassoni/Flash90)

In another sign of the times, Bank of Israel governor Amir Yaron this week hopped onto the chatbot bandwagon, using ChatGPT to help in the preparation of his speech.

Speaking at Monday’s Bank of Israel conference on human capital and the labor market, Yaron disclosed that two paragraphs of his speech were written by ChatGPT — an artificial intelligence-powered computer program that ostensibly can talk and write independently — launched on November 30.

ChatGPT, rolled out by OpenAI, a Microsoft-backed research organization co-founded by Elon Musk and Sam Altman, attracted more than 1 million users in the first five days after its launch. The tool is based on a so-called large language model trained with text data to answer questions or prompts like a human.

The governor appeared to want to show how AI, the tech that gives computers the ability to learn, is having an impact on the workforce and will inevitably lead to changes in the labor market. Yaron called for investment in the development of human capital skilled in the field of AI as part of a transition to an automated workplace.

“One of the most significant ways in which AI can impact human capital is by automating certain tasks and processes currently performed by humans,” Yaron remarked. “This may lead to a change in the types of skills valued in the workforce, as well as changes in the types of jobs available.”

Yaron explained that technological advances in AI are likely to create new job opportunities for people skilled in developing, programming and managing AI systems, as well as lead to an emergence of new industries.

“It is important for communities and organizations to stay abreast of developments in AI and be proactive in adapting to potential changes in the labor market,” Yaron said. “Ultimately, the impact of AI on human capital will depend on how it is adopted and used, as well as the policies and initiatives put in place to support the transition to a more automated workforce.”

Over the past decade, AI-based technologies have flourished in Israel in healthcare, cybersecurity, automotive technology and more, leading to cars that drive themselves, machines that read X-rays, and algorithms that respond to customer-service inquiries.

In the period between 2011 and 2020, investments in Israeli AI tech projects jumped from $305 million to over $4 billion, according to data from the Israel Innovation Authority. Israel is home to more than 2,000 companies that develop core AI technologies, according to data collected by Start-Up Nation Central. That compares with 1,150 AI companies at the end of 2018 and 512 companies in 2014.

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