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The Ethics and Accountability of AI


Date & Time

Tuesday, 26 Feb

14:15 - 15:15


Hall 4 - Auditorium 5


Widespread adoption of AI will change many of the basic conventions of markets and life as we know it, thus it follows that it will surely require some measure of public scrutiny and a new civic infrastructure. Elon Musk, is among the most vocal of proponents for regulating AI. “AI is a rare case where we need to be proactive about regulation instead of reactive. Because I think by the time we are reactive in AI regulation, it’s too late.” Elon Musk, 2017. Already today, in our impulse to automate, we are increasingly acquiescing power to machines. Algorithms provide a kind of convenient source of authority, an easy way to delegate responsibility, a shortcut we take without thinking. Yet, as noted in ‘Hello World’ by Hannah Fry, in the still largely unfettered world of AI, it is no longer sufficient to think of algorithms in isolation. We must also think of the shortcomings of the programmers who design them, and the potential risk associated with their usage. No matter how powerful or autonomous technology becomes, it is still man-made and, therefore, man’s responsibility to ensure its application is ethical. Cross-sector codes of conduct, regulation and greater transparency are all key areas to examine here. This important session will evaluate principles for making AI systems safe for society and ameliorating any ethical shortcomings.