10th of May, De Montfort University – Leicester (UK), Which legal regulation for robots and autonomous systems?
Which legal regulation for robots and autonomous systems?
On the 10th of May, 2017, Luciano Butti will discuss this topic at the Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility (De Montfort University – Leicester – UK).
Here you can find a brief abstract of my presentation:
LEGAL LIABILITIES, SOCIAL AND ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACTS, FISCAL OBLIGATIONS
Driverless technology is being developed much more rapidly than we may think. Autonomous vehicles will deliver major benefits in terms of road safety, opening of car mobility to new people, and stress reduction.
However, several legal, social, and environmental issues still remain to be addressed effectively.
First of all, this talk will examine the likely allocation of legal liabilities in case of accidents due to technological defects (typically, flaws in the algorithm which runs the autonomous system). The public seems less tolerant towards technological errors than it is towards human errors. Yet, should and could the law treat computer drivers as if they were human drivers? International legal trends will be scrutinized and proposals will be made for the area of tort (compensation claims), as well as for criminal law.
Secondly, the talk will address some of the social and ethical issues involved in the process of setting the algorithms containing the choices to be made by an autonomous vehicle in critical situations (ethics of algorithms). Ockham’s razor will often be very useful.
Furthermore, the environmental ambivalence of autonomous vehicles will be discussed. Autonomous vehicles will interact with humans and with other biological and engineered agents in an ‘infosphere’, potentially capable of changing deeply all such agents, ourselves included. Depending on many factors – mainly, the regulatory and marketing choices made while developing this technology – autonomous cars will show fairly positive or highly negative environmental impacts.
Finally, what about taxation? In spite of all the smart mechanisms we may be developing, artificial intelligence, and the driverless technology in particular, will have hugely negative impacts on certain kinds of jobs. We will need a lot of public money in order to assist the unemployed provisionally. Furthermore, we will have to implement an unprecedented capacity building scheme, capable of helping people to find new jobs, experience new ways of living and handle technological change in general. The necessary funding should come from the artificial intelligence industry, as nobody else can be made accountable for this.
To sum up, we are the masters of our driverless (and robotic) future. Yet, we still do not know precisely the way towards it. Sometimes, we seem to be using an old-fashioned GPS.