Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) refers to technologies that perceive, learn and reason in ways that simulate human cognitive abilities. TAP scholars consider AI’s effects on labor, business, policing, law, medicine, war, free speech, privacy and democracy, and discuss potential solutions to mitigate harms.

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Complex Questions as Face Recognition Tech Joins Ukraine War

“One of the most well-known problems with facial recognition technology is that it's not perfect, and it will make errors and in some cases those misidentifications can be life changing.” — Eric Goldman, Co-director, High Tech Law Institute, Santa Clara University School of Law

Eric Goldman
Source: Radio France Internationale (RFI)
March 25, 2022

Waymo Sues State DMV to Keep Robotaxi Safety Details Secret

“Corporate and government actors have pushed to transform the law of trade secrecy into one of the most — if not the most — powerful tools to ensure concealment of information.” — Sonia Katyal, Professor of Law, UC Berkeley

Sonia Katyal
Source: Los Angeles Times
January 28, 2022

Economists Pin More Blame on Tech for Rising Inequality

“Automation-fueled inequality is not an act of God or nature, it’s the result of choices corporations and we as a society have made about how to use technology.” — Daron Acemoglu, Professor of Economics, MIT

Daron Acemoglu
Source: The New York Times
January 20, 2022

5 Women at the Forefront of Next-Gen Innovation

“Current artificial intelligence systems have been shown to widen asymmetries of power along the lines of gender, race, and economic status.” — Dr. Kate Crawford, Professor of Communication and STS, University of Southern California,

Kate Crawford
Source: Architectural Digest
November 18, 2021

There's an app to help prove vax status, but experts say choose wisely

“We have nowadays protocols, which allow for certain data to be verified, and used, without compromising individual's identity” — Alessandro Acquisti, Professor of Information Technology and Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University

Alessandro Acquisti
Source: NPR
November 15, 2021

Facebook’s next privacy nightmare will be a sight to see

“In Zuckerberg’s metaverse, will we be able to prevent our eyes from giving Meta great insight into our souls?” — Evan Selinger, Professor, University of Rochester Institute of Technology

Evan Selinger
Source: Boston Globe
November 11, 2021

Would Robot Umpires Have Prevented the Wilmer Flores Giants-Dodgers Controversy?

“If the robot can be more objective than an umpire,” he said Friday, “then I think that is good for baseball, especially if fans feel that the robot is objective. ” — James Bessen, Executive Director , Technology & Policy Research Initiative at Boston University’s Law School

James Bessen
Source: The Washington Post
October 15, 2021

As Workers Age, Robots Take on More Jobs

“Aging is a huge part of the story” in robot adoption.” — Daron Acemoglu, Professor of Economics, MIT

Daron Acemoglu
Source: Reuters
September 16, 2021

Do we need humans for that job? Automation booms after COVID

“Many of the jobs that get automated were at the middle of the skill distribution. They don’t exist anymore, and the workers that used to perform them are now doing lower-skill jobs.” — Daron Acemoglu, Professor of Economics, MIT

Daron Acemoglu
Source: AP News
September 5, 2021

‘A lot of people are sleepwalking into it’: the Expert Raising Concerns over AI

“The creation of contemporary AI systems depends on exploiting energy and mineral resources from the planet, cheap labour, and data at scale.” — Kate Crawford, Professor of Communication and Science and Technology Studies, University of Southern California

Kate Crawford
Source: The Age
August 20, 2021
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TAP Blog

Automation and Inequality

Economics professors Daron Acemoglu, MIT, and Pascual Restrepo, BU, explain why the US and many industrialized countries are seeing rising wage inequality go hand in hand with modest productivity gains.

Daron Acemoglu and Pascual Restrepo

Fact Sheets

Artificial Intelligence

Artificial intelligence (AI) refers to technologies that perform learning and reasoning in ways that simulate human cognitive abilities.

Featured Article

Digital Civil Liberties and the Translation Problem

As new surveillance technologies and smartphones become ubiquitous, courts in the United States and Europe struggle to apply traditional principles to protect civil liberties.

By: Neil Richards, Michael Washington