Work With Purpose

Monday May 22, 2023

How is the public sector using generative AI?

Generative artificial intelligence (AI) is increasingly being used by public services globally, including in Australia, to improve policy-making and program creation. AI has immense potential to transform how the public sector functions and serves communities, from streamlining copywriting to providing strategic advice. However, there are risks and limitations associated with using AI, such as privacy breaches, accountability issues, and bias concerns.

In this episode of Work with Purpose, Caroline Walsh, CEO of the Institute of Public Administration Australia (IPAA) ACT hosts a conversation that explores the potential and challenges of using generative AI in the Australian public sector. Sally Bayley-Nelson, manager of the AusIndustry Insights team, and Anthony Murfett, head of division for Technology and Digital at the Department of Industry, Science and Resources, share their experiences using generative AI tools for their work and discuss the benefits and limitations of the technology. They also talk about the risks that the public sector needs to be mindful of when working with AI and the importance of putting guardrails in place to regulate its use.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Use of generative AI: benefits and limitations in the workplace
  • Risks in using generative AI in the public sector and regulatory guardrails
  • How AI suggests regulating itself: thoughts and missing points
  • Best practices and hopes for AI in the public sector’s future.



Produced in partnership between

Supported by


  • Anthony Murfett image
    Anthony Murfett

    Head of Division for Technology and Digital
    Department of Industry, Science and Resources

  • Caroline Walsh image
    Caroline Walsh

    Chief Executive Officer
    OzHelp Foundation

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