Although not a universally held goal, maintaining human-centric artificial
intelligence is necessary for society’s long-term stability. Fortunately, the legal and
technological problems of maintaining control are actually fairly well understood
and amenable to engineering. The real problem is establishing the social and political will for assigning and maintaining accountability for artifacts when these artefacts are generated or used. I begin by reviewing the necessity and tractability
of maintaining human control, and then both the technological and policy mechanisms by which this can be achieved. What makes the problem both most interesting and most threatening is that achieving consensus around such an approach requires at least some measure of agreement on broad existential concerns. But without clear accountability across the sector, AI will be used to facilitate fraud, with AI legal persons proving the ultimate technology as both shell companies and bought votes.
Joanna J. Bryson is a transdisciplinary researcher on the structure and dynamics of human- and animal-like intelligence. Her research covering topics from artificial intelligence, through autonomy and robot ethics, and on to human cooperation has appeared in venues ranging from a reddit to Science. She holds degrees in Psychology from Chicago and Edinburgh, and Artificial Intelligence from Edinburgh and MIT. She has additional professional research experience from Princeton, Oxford, Harvard, and LEGO, and technical experience in Chicago’s financial industry, and international management consultancy. Bryson is presently a Reader (associate professor) at the University of Bath.
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