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Villani vows to tackle ‘potentially disastrous’ effects of AI

Image: Gwydion M. Williams [CC BY 2.0] via Flickr

France’s artificial intelligence strategy must ensure that the development of intelligent computer systems will not hamper democracy or equality, Cédric Villani, the MP in charge of the strategy, has warned.

Villani, who won the Fields Medal for maths in 2010, said that there were already examples of how AI “can have disastrous effects on economic problems and democracy” in an interview published in the newspaper Le Monde on 9 September.

Villani said that he had been influenced by Weapons of Math Destruction—a book published in 2016 by data journalist Cathy O’Neil—which demonstrated how AI was being used for what Villani called “unacceptable ends”.

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