A Survey of Artificial General Intelligence Projects for Ethics, Risk, and Policy

Global Catastrophic Risk Institute Working Paper 17-1

99 Pages Posted: 16 Nov 2017  

Seth Baum

Global Catastrophic Risk Institute

Date Written: November 12, 2017

Abstract

Artificial general intelligence (AGI) is AI that can reason across a wide range of domains. It has long been considered the “grand dream” or “holy grail” of AI. It also poses major issues of ethics, risk, and policy due to its potential to transform society: if AGI is built, it could either help solve the world’s problems or cause major catastrophe, possibly even human extinction. This paper presents the first-ever survey of active AGI R&D projects in terms of ethics, risk, and policy. A thorough search identifies 45 projects of diverse sizes, nationalities, ethical goals, and other attributes. Most projects are either academic or corporate. The academic projects tend to express goals of advancing knowledge and are less likely to be active on AGI safety issues. The corporate projects tend to express goals of benefiting humanity and are more likely to be active on safety. Most projects are based in the US, and almost all are in either the US or a US ally, including all of the larger projects. This geographic concentration could simplify policymaking, though most projects publish open-source code, enabling contributions from anywhere in the world. These and other findings of the survey offer an empirical basis for the study of AGI R&D and a guide for policy and other action.

Keywords: artificial intelligence, ethics, risk, policy

Suggested Citation

Baum, Seth, A Survey of Artificial General Intelligence Projects for Ethics, Risk, and Policy (November 12, 2017). Global Catastrophic Risk Institute Working Paper 17-1 . Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3070741 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3070741

Seth Baum (Contact Author)

Global Catastrophic Risk Institute ( email )

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