Algorithm-Assisted Decision-Making in the Public Sector: Framing the Issues Using Administrative Law Rules Governing Discretionary Power

Philosophical Transactions A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences (2018) doi:10.1098/rsta.2017.0359

27 Pages Posted: 7 Aug 2018

See all articles by Marion Oswald

Marion Oswald

University of Northumbria at Newcastle

Date Written: June 25, 2018

Abstract

This article considers some of the risks and challenges raised by the use of algorithm-assisted decision-making and predictive tools by the public sector. Alongside, it reviews a number of long-standing English administrative law rules designed to regulate the discretionary power of the state. The principles of administrative law are concerned with human decisions involved in the exercise of state power and discretion, thus offering a promising avenue for the regulation of the growing number of algorithm-assisted decisions within the public sector. This article attempts to re-frame key rules for the new algorithmic environment and argues that ‘old’ law – interpreted for a new context – can help guide lawyers, scientists and public sector practitioners alike when considering the development and deployment of new algorithmic tools.

Keywords: Algorithms, Public Sector, Law, Predictions

JEL Classification: K, C

Suggested Citation

Oswald, Marion, Algorithm-Assisted Decision-Making in the Public Sector: Framing the Issues Using Administrative Law Rules Governing Discretionary Power (June 25, 2018). Philosophical Transactions A: Mathematical, Physical and Engineering Sciences (2018) doi:10.1098/rsta.2017.0359, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3216435

Marion Oswald (Contact Author)

University of Northumbria at Newcastle ( email )

Pandon Building
208, City Campus East-1
Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, Newcastle NE1 8ST
United Kingdom

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