Power, Process, and Automated Decision-Making
20 Pages Posted: 2 Oct 2019
Date Written: September 29, 2019
Many decisions that used to be made by humans are now made by machines. And yet, automated decision-making systems based on “big data” – powered algorithms and machine learning are just as prone to mistakes, biases, and arbitrariness as their human counterparts. The result is a technologically driven decision-making process that seems to defy interrogation, analysis, and accountability and, therefore, undermines due process. This should make algorithmic decision-making an illegitimate source of authority in a liberal democracy. This Essay argues that algorithmic decision-making is a product of the neoliberal project to undermine social values like equality, nondiscrimination, and human flourishing and, therefore, is only legitimate in a society that promotes neoliberal efficiency, technological solution-ism, and market freedoms over all other values. I then propose a new way to rein in the excesses of automated systems.
Keywords: artificial intelligence, algorithms, discrimination, neoliberalism, privacy
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