The use of artificial intelligence (AI) in investment management is rapidly increasing, posing both opportunities and challenges—including ethical challenges—for firms and professionals working to adopt these technologies in investment processes. This paper addresses the ethical considerations of using AI in investment management. It is designed to inform investment professionals and firms on the spectrum of issues brought about by the use of AI tools and big data in investing. It thereby aims to advance and motivate the evolution of ethical practices in the development of AI technologies. AI adoption offers significant potential benefits, yet it also entails several risks. Instilling an ethical framework in the design, development, and deployment of AI is critical to ensure that the applications firms deploy serve the best interest of clients.
Ethical considerations span the AI workflow, and this paper sets out questions for professionals to evaluate at each step via an ethical decision framework. It combines fundamental ethical principles with the applicability of relevant professional standards. In addition to an ethical framework, the organization’s senior leadership must establish (i) a culture conducive to client-centric AI innovation and collaboration, (ii) a robust risk management and governance framework, and (iii) a talent development programme to ensure teams possess the appropriate knowledge, skills, and abilities. Taken together, these elements provide the most supportive environment for AI to be successfully used in the investment context.