Person using ChatGPT on phone

Generative AI: Language models and multimodal foundation models

Author  Loren Dela Cruz
Date 1 June 2023

ADM+S Centre Directors Prof Julian Thomas (RMIT University) and Prof Jean Burgess (QUT) have co-led a report with Prof Genevieve Bell AO (ANU) and Prof Shazia Sadiq (UQ) on Generative AI: Language models and multimodal foundation models.

Commissioned by Australia’s National Science and Technology Council (NSTC) at the request of the Minister for Industry and Science, the Hon Ed Husic MP in February 2023, the rapid research report addressed the following questions:

  • What are the opportunities and risks of applying large language models (LLMs) and multimodal foundation models (MFMs) learning technologies over the next two, five and ten years?
  • What are some examples of strategies that have been put in place internationally by other advanced economies since the launch of models like ChatGPT to address the potential opportunities and impacts of artificial intelligence (AI)?

Publicly released by the office of Australia’s Chief Scientist today, the report was written in response to rapid changes in the industry following the launch of ChatGPT (a generative AI-powered chatbot) in November 2022 and included input from 24 expert contributors and 7 peer reviewers including ADM+S researchers Dr Jose-Miguel Bello y Villarino (University of Sydney), Dr Dang Nguyen (RMIT University), Prof Christine Parker FASSA (University of Melbourne), Prof Jason Potts (RMIT University), Dr Aaron Snoswell (QUT), Prof Nicolas Suzor (QUT), Prof Kimberlee Weatherall (University of Sydney), Prof Haiqing Yu (RMIT University) and Prof Karen Yeung (University of Birmingham).

“The current ‘ChatGPT moment’ is provoking public conversation about the role AI should have in Australian society… Generative AI raises questions about opportunities and risks of widespread adoption; the scope and adequacy of national strategic planning and policies; the fitness of legal and regulatory approaches; and the implications of increasing geopolitical competition and geo-specific regulation in AI-related technologies and industries,” the report states.

The NSTC is responsible for providing advice to the Prime Minister and other Ministers on important science and technology issues facing Australia.

“It is incredibly gratifying to know that this work has helped inform the Australian government’s approach to and consultation on AI regulation,” said Prof Jean Burgess, Associate Director of the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision-Making & Society (ADM+S), and Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.

The report was developed in partnership with the Australian Council of Learned Academies, the Australian Academy of the Humanities, the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering and the Australian Academy of Science.

Read the full report:

Media enquiries:
Loren Dela Cruz
Communications and Engagement Manager