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Friday, December 04, 2015

Artificial Intelligence Ethics a New Focus at Cambridge University

Photo: Amir Mizroch
Amir Mizroch, Technology editor, EMEA, The Wall Street Journal reports, "A new center to study the implications of artificial intelligence and try to influence its ethical development has been established at the U.K.’s Cambridge University, the latest sign that concerns are rising about AI’s impact on everything from loss of jobs to humanity’s very existence."

Photo: Supercomputer
Credit: Sam Churchill

The Leverhulme Trust, a non-profit foundation that awards grants for academic research in the U.K., on Thursday announced a grant of £10 million ($15 million) over ten years to the university to establish the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence.
The new facility will be directed by Professor Huw Price, the university’s Bertrand Russell Professor of Philosophy. Others on the team include political scientists, lawyers, psychologists and technologists, said Prof. Gordon Marshal, the director of the Leverhulme Trust.

The Trust sprang out of a company that now is part of Unilever. However, the European consumer goods conglomerate had no official role in the Trust’s allocation of funding, Marshal said. Several former Unilever employees serve on the Trust’s board of directors, he said.
The new center will work in conjunction with the university’s Centre for the Study of Existential Risk, which researches emerging risks to humanity’s future, including climate change, biological warfare, and artificial intelligence. Price is also the academic director at the CSER...

The new center will also collaborate with the Oxford Martin School at the University of Oxford, Imperial College London, and the University of California, Berkeley. A major focus of the collaboration would be around what Price called “the value alignment program,” where software programmers would team up with ethicists and philosophers on trying to write code that would govern the behavior of artificial intelligence programs.
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Related link
The future of intelligence: Cambridge University launches new centre to study AI and the future of humanity

Source: Wall Street Journal (blog) 

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