TU Wien Informatics

20 Years

AI Ethics as Translational Ethics

  • 2022-04-05
  • Public Lecture
  • AI
  • Social Responsibility

David Danks talks about the ethical implications of AI and how we can create ethics specific to AI design, development, and deployment.

AI Ethics as Translational Ethics

  • This is an online-only event.
    See description for details.
  • Speaker: David Danks, University of California, San Diego, USA
  • Moderator: Moshe Y. Vardi, Rice University, USA


There is now widespread recognition that advances in AI and related technologies have deep ethical and societal implications. At the same time, there is much less consensus about what we should expect from AI ethics. In this talk, I will first argue that ethical analyses cannot be treated as a secondary or optional aspect of technology creation. No AIs are outside of the scope of ethics, though the ethical content of an AI is often different than people think. I will then argue that AI ethics should be a translational ethics: a robust, multi-disciplinary effort that starts with the practices of AI design, development, and deployment, and then develops practical guidance to produce more ethical AI. Throughout the talk, I will provide concrete examples of AI ethics as translational ethics.

About David Danks

David Danks is Professor of Data Science & Philosophy and affiliate faculty in Computer Science & Engineering at University of California, San Diego. His research interests are at the intersection of philosophy, cognitive science, and machine learning, using ideas, methods, and frameworks from each to advance our understanding of complex, interdisciplinary problems. Danks has examined the ethical, psychological, and policy issues around AI and robotics in transportation, healthcare, privacy, and security. He has also done research on computational cognitive science and causal discovery algorithms. Danks is the recipient of a James S. McDonnell Foundation Scholar Award, as well as an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship.

About Moshe Y. Vardi

With over 50,000 citations, Moshe Vardi is one of the most cited computer scientists worldwide. Since 1993, Moshe Vardi has been a professor at Rice University (Texas, USA). He is a leading researcher in the field of logic applications in computer science and plays a leading role in the discussion of the role of computer science in society. The lectures and articles by Moshe Vardi on the implications of robotics and artificial intelligence (up to the question of whether intelligent robots are stealing your job) have strongly influenced public discourse. Until 2017, he served as Editor‐in‐Chief of Communications of the ACM (CACM). Moshe Y. Vardi studied Physics and Computer Science at BarIlan University and at Weizmann Institute. He received his doctorate from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem (Israel). He spent several years in various positions at top institutions such as the Hebrew University, Stanford University and the IBM Research Center in San Jose (USA).

Online Event

We are looking forward to seeing you:

  • Participate via Zoom (password: 0dzqxqiy).
  • The talk will also be live streamed and recorded on our YouTube Channel.
  • For further announcements and information, please visit the DIGHUM Website, which also provides slides and recordings of all our past events.

The DIGHUM Lecture Series

Digital Humanism deals with the complex relationship between man and machine. It acknowledges the potential of Informatics and IT. At the same time, it points to related apparent threats such as privacy violations, ethical concerns with AI, automation, and loss of jobs, and the ongoing monopolization on the Web. The Corona crisis has shown these two faces of the accelerated digitalization—we are in a crucial moment in time.

For this reason, we started the DIGHUM Lecture Series, a new initiative with regular online events to discuss the different aspects of Digital Humanism. We will have a speaker on a specific topic (30 minutes) followed by a discussion of 30 minutes every second Tuesday of each month at 5:00 PM CEST. This crisis seriously affects our mobility, but it also offers the possibility to participate in events from all over the world—let’s take this chance to meet virtually.

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