Much of the current debates around Artificial Intelligence concerns the implicit and even explicit bias of opaque and complex algorithms used in Machine Learning systems. A new wave of scholarship has exposed these failings and in response new organizations and research centers for “ethical AI” or “human-centered AI” have emerged. The goal is to maintain a human “decision” both in setting goals or norms, and in choosing appropriate methods to guarantee outcomes. In this talk, David Bates will interrogate contemporary AI through the problem of decision, first by highlighting the always technical condition of human cognition, and then through the question of conflicting norms. Finally, through a critical analysis of predictive AI and parallel developments in Cognitive Science, Bates will argue that human decision is always a break with norms in moments of crisis, and only human beings are capable of these decisions despite the necessity of technological support.
David Bates is Professor in the Department of Rhetoric at UC Berkeley, where he teaches Intellectual History. His interests lie in the history of cognition, technology studies, and political thought. He is completing a book on technology and thinking, entitled: An Artificial History of Natural Intelligence.
Eva Weber-Guskar is a professor of ethics and philosophy of emotions at Ruhr University Bochum (RUB). Currently, she is working on ethical questions in dealing with AI, especially Emotional AI, and on temporal aspects in theories of the good life. She is a PI in the interdisciplinary project “INTERACT! New forms of social interaction with intelligent systems” at the RUB. Her second book is on human dignity (Würde als Haltung, Mentis 2016) and her first book, based on her PhD, is on understanding emotions (Die Klarheit der Gefühle. Was es heißt, Emotionen zu verstehen, De Gruyter 2009). She is also a co-founder of PhilPublica, an initiative to foster academic philosophy in the public domain.
About Carte Blanche IV
Exchanges have always been an essential component of the KWI’s activities. We are part of a regional consortium of universities in the Ruhr area and cooperate closely with our local partner institutions. At the same time, our work thrives on an international outlook that taps into debates and developments in the social sciences and humanities abroad. In the new online instalment of our Carte Blanche lecture series, the KWI will provide a platform to bring these two networks into conversation. In each session, an international guest speaker will present original research, which will then be discussed by a scholar from the University Alliance Ruhr.