AI Ethics According to Accenture: The Algorithm as Citizen (and More)

business_ethics_highlights_2There is a lot of controversy surrounding the idea of corporate personhood. Are artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms persons, too?

In this Forbes piece, the author recounts advice given by international consulting firm Accenture about how to think about and deploy AI algorithms. While much of the practical advice seems sound, the modes of thinking being commended as frameworks for understanding AI raise important questions. Does it make sense to think of a software algorithm as a citizen? Is an AI algorithm in any meaningful way like a child you would raise? (If the answer to either of those questions is “yes,” what duties might you – or your company – have to your AI algorithm?) >>>

LINK: 5 Trends For The Truly ‘Intelligent,’ Data-Driven Business (by Jeff Erickson for Forbes)

It’s time to start thinking of your artificial intelligence algorithm as a citizen, or a company representative, and make sure it upholds your values.

That’s one of the key points made by the global consulting firm Accenture in a recent forecast of the five technology trends likely to unfold during the next three years. The report, Accenture Technology Vision for Oracle 2018, draws from the overarching annual Technology Vision report, using Oracle examples to show how companies can tap into emerging technologies.

“Pay attention to how you ‘raise’ your AI,” Accenture advises, so you’re ready to handle the inevitable challenges. “Just like an employee, an AI represents its company with every action it takes,” including mistakes such as turning away a qualified loan applicant. When problems arise, an organization should “be able to articulate the principles that your organization used to make AI-based decisions.”

What do you think?

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  1. Consider Amazon. At its core is a book-recommendation algorithm. Now fire (outsource) all other labour (possible in theory I think?). Now all that’s left is a board of directors (legally required) and an algorithm. So the corporate person just is the combination of board and algorithm, each with its own set of decisions to make.

  2. gerlindeweger

    This is the correct thinking – an enterprise raises their automated decision-making solutions. It is how an AI is trained that determines it’s behaviour. An AI robot is already a citizen in Saudi Arabia.

  3. Pingback: Top 10 Business Ethics Stories of 2018 | Business Ethics Highlights

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