Moral agency, moral responsibility, and artefacts

Joel Parthemore, Blay Whitby

Forskningsoutput: Kapitel i bok/rapport/Conference proceedingKonferenspaper i proceedingPeer review


Abstract--- This paper follows directly from our forthcoming paper in International Journal of Machine Consciousness, where we discuss the requirements for an artefact to be a moral agent and conclude that the artefactual question is ultimately a red herring. As we did in the earlier paper, we take moral agency to be that condition in which an agent can, appropriately, be held responsible for her actions and their consequences. We set a number of stringent conditions on moral agency. A moral agent must be embedded in a cultural and specifically moral context, and embodied in a suitable physical form. It must be, in some substantive sense, alive. It must exhibit self-conscious awareness: who does the “I” who thinks “I” think that “I” is? It must exhibit a range of highly sophisticated conceptual abilities, going well beyond what the likely majority of conceptual agents possess: not least that it must possess a well-developed moral space of reasons. Finally, it must be able to communicate its moral agency through some system of signs: a “private” moral world is not enough. After reviewing these conditions and pouring cold water on a number of recent claims for having achieved “minimal” machine consciousness, we turn our attention to a number of existing and, in some cases, commonplace artefacts that lack moral agency yet nevertheless require one to take a moral stance toward them, as if they were moral agents. Finally, we address another class of agents raising a related set of issues: autonomous military robots.
Titel på värdpublikation[Host publication title missing]
RedaktörerDavid Gunkel, Joanna Bryson, Steve Torrance
FörlagThe Society for the Study of Artificial Intelligence and Simulation of Behaviour
Antal sidor9
StatusPublished - 2012
EvenemangThe machine question: AI,ethics and moral responsibility: AISB/IACAP World Congress 2012 - Birmingham
Varaktighet: 2012 juli 2 → …


KonferensThe machine question: AI,ethics and moral responsibility: AISB/IACAP World Congress 2012
Period2012/07/02 → …

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