Climate Change and the Political Pathways of Aithe Technocracy-Democracy Dilemma in Light of Artificial Intelligence and Human Agency

28 Pages Posted: 14 Mar 2023

See all articles by Mark Coeckelbergh

Mark Coeckelbergh

University of Vienna

Henrik Skaug Sætra

University of Oslo - Department of Informatics

Abstract

It is generally thought that artificial intelligence (AI) has a significant impact on politics and democracy.  Meanwhile, the technology is also often hailed a solution to key societal and environmental challenges. It raises questions regarding, for example, how we can and should deal with climate change. This article links and discusses these issues by putting them in the context of a technocracy-democracy dilemma and by using the concept of critical junctures. Then it identifies two political pathways of AI and critically discusses their underlying assumptions. This offers a useful framework for further discussion of the relations between AI, climate change, and democracy, and enables the examination of important issues for the politics of technology, such as the role of human expertise vis-à-vis artificial intelligence, the problems raised by techno-solutionism, and the question at what level of governance AI and climate change should be addressed.

Keywords: artificial intelligence, democracy, technocracy, Climate change, critical junctures, politics of technology

Suggested Citation

Coeckelbergh, Mark and Sætra, Henrik Skaug, Climate Change and the Political Pathways of Aithe Technocracy-Democracy Dilemma in Light of Artificial Intelligence and Human Agency. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4388806 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4388806

Mark Coeckelbergh (Contact Author)

University of Vienna ( email )

Henrik Skaug Sætra

University of Oslo - Department of Informatics ( email )

Norway

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