Leading digital business executives, policymakers and other stakeholders discussed on Friday agile forms of governance necessary for responsible digital transformation when they met in eastern Japan ahead of this weekend's Group of Seven ministerial meeting.

The DX Summit in the Ikaho resort of Gunma Prefecture focused on issues concerning artificial intelligence, digital infrastructure and innovation in an era of disruptive technology, with senior executives from Google LLC and Microsoft Corp. among the panelists.

With ChatGPT reaching 100 million users less than three months after its launch in November 2022, the importance of realizing a coordinated and harmonized regulatory approach to the rapidly advancing technology of generative AI was the topic of much discussion.

Digital stakeholders pose for a commemorative photo at the DX Summit held in Gunma Prefecture, eastern Japan, on April 28, 2023. (Kyodo)

"AI is too important not to regulate, and it's too important not to regulate well," said Michaela Browning, vice president of government affairs and public policy for Asia Pacific at Google.

Digital Minister Taro Kono, who made an appearance via "Avataro," a mechanized robotic avatar made in his likeness, reiterated his support for an international framework for cross-border data transfers, saying he would like to expand it beyond the G-7 to other like-minded countries in the future.

Data Free Flow with Trust, a concept proposed by Japan at the World Economic Forum annual summit in 2019, seeks to facilitate economic growth on a global scale.

At the conclusion of the one-day event, representatives from each of the six sessions, which also included discussions on inclusive and sustainable digital transformation, provided high-level summaries to Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura and other G-7 ministers.

Organized by the WEF Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, the DX Summit brought together around 100 leaders from business, government and civil society to advance collective action on digital issues.

The two-day G-7 Digital and Tech Ministers' Meeting, jointly chaired by Kono, Nishimura and Internal affairs and Communications Minister Takeaki Matsumoto, will be held in nearby Takasaki from Saturday.

Related coverage:

G-7 farm ministers condemn Russia for war's impact on food security

ChatGPT can be tricked to write malware if acting in developer mode

G-7 digital chiefs to call for more research, governance of AI