Making Algorithms Safe for Workers: Occupational Risks Associated With Work Managed by Artificial Intelligence
Transfer: European Review of Labour and Research, 2021
20 Pages Posted: 6 Dec 2021
Date Written: September 1, 2021
It is increasingly common for companies to use artificial intelligence mechanisms to manage work. This study examines the health hazards caused by these new forms of technological management. Occupational risks can be reduced if they are taken into account when programming an algorithm. This study confirms the need for algorithms to be correctly programmed, taking account of these occupational risks. In the same way as supervisors have to be trained in risk prevention to be able to perform their work, the algorithm must be programmed to weigh up the occupational risks – and when such features do not exist, steps must be taken to prevent the algorithm being used to direct workers. The algorithm must assess all (known) factors posing a risk to workers’ health and safety. It therefore seems necessary to incorporate a mandatory risk assessment performed by specialists in the programming of algorithms so that all ascertained risks can be taken into account.
Keywords: occupational risk prevention, artificial intelligence to manage workers, automated decision-making, people analytics, big data, algorithms to manage the work, digitalisation of labour, health and safety at work
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