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Cambridge Festival: Suffer the little robots? The moral and legal status of artificial beings

2 April 2021

Suffer the little robots? The moral and legal status of artificial beings.

A presentation given by Henry Shevlin.
6:00pm-6:30pm on Friday 2 April 2021
From the abused simulants of Blade Runner to the neglected child-robot ‘David’ in A.I. Artificial Intelligence, we seem to have little difficulty in imagining artificial beings feeling pain and distress. The kind of advanced artificial intelligence we see in fiction is of course far removed from the capabilities of real world machines. However, as the capacities of artificial intelligence continue to improve, interest has grown within the AI ethics community concerning the question of whether – and when – artificial beings may reasonably come to possess or demand some form of moral status. In this talk, I suggest that there is good reason for lawyers, politicians, philosophers, and scientists to start grappling with how we could identify suffering in beings radically different from ourselves, and how we should respond to the moral concerns of sentient AI as a society.
Audience: Adults; young adults 12+

Register for this free event here.
This presentation is part of the new, interdisciplinary Cambridge Festival (replacing the Cambridge Science Festival and the Cambridge Festival of Ideas) taking place from 26 March to 4 April 2021. The festival will primarily be digital in 2021 – to enable wide-reaching engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic.