"AI for all" is a matter of social justice

AI Ethics. 2022 Sep 22;1-10. doi: 10.1007/s43681-022-00222-z. Online ahead of print.


Artificial intelligence (AI) is a radically transformative technology (or system of technologies) that created new existential possibilities and new standards of well-being in human societies. In this article, I argue that to properly understand the increasingly important role AI plays in our society, we must consider its impacts on social justice. For this reason, I propose to conceptualize AI's transformative role and its socio-political implications through the lens of the theory of social justice known as the Capability Approach. According to the approach, a just society must put its members in a position to acquire and exercise a series of basic capabilities and provide them with the necessary means for these capabilities to be actively realized. Because AI is re-shaping the very definition of some of these basic capabilities, I conclude that AI itself should be considered among the conditions of possession and realization of the capabilities it transforms. In other words, access to AI-in the many forms this access can take-is necessary for social justice.

Keywords: Artificial intelligence; Capabilities; Justice; Nussbaum; Society; Technology.