Exploring the risks of uncontrolled development of artificial intelligence systems

Preserving our humanity in the face of the major challenges of the 21st century is at the heart of our association’s mission. The unbridled development of digital technology, and more specifically artificial intelligence systems (AIS), is one of the major challenges we have identified. Doesn’t the omnipresence of screens carry the risk of dehumanising relationships? How does the massification of automated decisions via algorithms restrict our freedom of choice? Who are the major beneficiaries and losers of the mass deployment of AIS? To what end is this development being implemented? These are some of the questions we propose to explore in this field of research.

Our exploration objectives

Since the 2000s, the digital transformation of the economy and society has continued to accelerate. The massive exploitation of personal data has exploded with the scaling up of increasingly complex algorithms and the exponential increase in computing power. Invisibly, and unbeknownst to us, AIS are increasingly used in all the IT systems that orchestrate the world: finance, health, work, education, social networks and justice.

Some see it as the future, an opportunity to make more rational decisions, to free humans from the most onerous tasks, or to accelerate the ecological transition. For others, the uncontrolled development of AIS is fraught with risks. While there is already a vast literature on the subject, for the moment it remains confined to expert circles. What’s more, the information and training that does exist for managers is geared towards the use of AIS. There is no model, content or project designed to give them the skills they need to question this established system; to be able to take courageous decisions, including rejecting technology if it jeopardises human interests.

The aim of this exploration is therefore to make existing work accessible to new audiences.

  • for the preservation of “human potential” (as a sentient being, very different from a machine/robot)
  • for the quality of human relations, the fairness and humanity of decisions, equity and social justice
  • for individual freedoms, for democracy
  • for the ability of leaders to remain in control of their decisions
  • for the preservation of the major ecological balances (consumption of resources, pollution)

In a context where private actors are dominant and regulation is weak.

  • Promote a techno-prudent (and if necessary techno-critical) approach to provide managers with varied and analysed material to help them make judgements 
  • and, more generally, to disseminate this information widely to all those who wish to preserve human beings’ ability to make ‘sensitive’ choices and decisions.

Our initial work

Our expert

Amal Marc

  • Digital specialist (legal and technical).
  • Independent consultant (Digital compliance, cyber risks & eco-responsible business)
  • Extensive corporate experience (Cap Gemini, Sogeti, CNIL, EDF, Safran)