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Westpac promotes responsible use of AI

3 minute read

The big four bank is set to be a founding member of a new consortium.

Westpac has announced that it will be one of the founding members of a new consortium seeking to promote the adoption of artificial intelligence within financial services.

According to the bank, the UNSW AI Fintech Hub will bring together industry-leading researchers and businesses to tackle emerging challenges associated with AI.

The founding members alongside Westpac will include UNSW as well as Amazon Web Services, Databricks, BrewAI and Cognitivo Consulting.

As AI becomes more and more advanced, Westpac group chief technology officer David Walker said that there is a need to ensure it is used in the right way.

“We are incredibly excited to participate with UNSW and tap into the expertise of the consortium to solve important and complex problems across the sector, from helping customers to reducing risk, and supporting businesses with their sustainability priorities,” he said.

“One of our first goals, for example, is to help organisations measure their transition to Net Zero by developing quantitative tools and AI models that can offer more accurate and sector-specific carbon accounting estimations.”

UNSW Business School senior lecturer Eric Lim described developments in the areas of AI and fintech as exciting.

“It represents an extension of our physical lives into a virtual domain,” said Dr Lim.

“For AI to serve humanity, we must always consider how it is applied, and ensure AI serves as part of a critical and ethical infrastructure for the new web3 economy.”

In August, Acadian Asset Management announced that it had developed an automated system to help identify greenwashing in potential investment targets.

Through the use of artificial intelligence, the investment manager suggested that it was better able to screen the green credentials of public companies. 

Acadian’s system utilises ESG signals gathered from text mining of earnings call transcripts, regulatory filings and other company data. 

These signals, the firm suggested, can help to identify climate transition risks, measures of good and bad corporate culture, and the experience and qualifications of directors.

Jon Bragg

Jon Bragg

Jon Bragg is a journalist for Momentum Media's Investor Daily, nestegg and ifa. He enjoys writing about a wide variety of financial topics and issues and exploring the many implications they have on all aspects of life.