Constructing a Mutually Supportive Interface between Ethics and Regulation
21 Pages Posted: 20 Jun 2019 Last revised: 7 Jul 2020
Date Written: July 2, 2020
When the word 'ethical' becomes synonymous with specious, you know that something is amiss. With each data governance scandal, with each creation of a corporate 'ethics board', 'ethical standards' seemingly lose a few more feathers, to the point of generating instant suspicion when invoked in any official report. We argue that a key challenge in this regard is to more precisely define the ethics-regulation interface. In order to do this, we first provide an overview of recent endeavours to develop ethical frameworks around technology. We then look at a successful process of refinement of the ethics-regulation interface: the case of healthcare ethics in the UK. The third section develops an account of what a more robust ethics-regulation interface could look like, which would support a process of cross-fertilisation between the political, ethical and legal approaches. Finally, the fourth and last section critically examines a ‘live’ implementation of such ethics-regulation interface, as put forward in Quebec’s ‘Bill 29’.
Keywords: ai ethics, artificial intelligence, human rights, medical ethics, technology policy, regulation and governance, governing ai, ethics washing
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