Tag Archives: Killer Robot

Künstliche Intelligenz und Ethik bei der NATO

Auf dem jährlichen Seminar der Interallied Confederation of Reserve Officers (CIOR) der NATO vom 27. bis 29. Januar 2019 in Bonn hielt ich einen Vortrag zu “Ethics and Autonomous Systems” und einen Workshop zu “Ethics and Future War(fare) in Science-Fiction Films”.


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Terminator won’t save us


New technologies like AI open up a lot of chances but also bear many risks. Couldn’t we just learn how to deal with this from science-fiction films having already played through the major issues of AI? Unfortunately not. Rather than give advice, science-fiction distracts from the currently relevant ethical and legal challenges of AI and the socio-political implications.

Mein kompletter Beitrag im Blog des Humboldt-Instituts für Internet und Gesellschaft (HIIG) hier.

Science-Fiction auf der EISA-PEC in Prag

Auf der EISA Pan-European Conference on International Relations  (#EISAPEC18) im September 2018 in Prag präsentierte ich zwei Papiere:

  • zum einen eine aktualisierte Version von“Killer Robots”: How Campaigners and Science-Fiction-Films show as a Dystopian Future in der Section “Technological Change and the Shape of an IR to Come” von Laura Horn und Nicholas Kiersy



  • zum anderen Leaving Earth Behind –
    Apocalypse and Escapism in Science-Fiction-Films
    in der Section “Anthropocene Politics: International Relations after the end of the World” von David Chandler und Delf Rothe

Killer Robots in London

Auf der achten Ausgabe der Konferenz Popular Culture and World Politics (PCWP 8) präsentierte ich zum Thema “Killer Robots: How campaigners and science-fiction-movies show as the same dystopian future” im Panel “Visuality and Activism”. Programm und Präsentation

Abstract: The 2012 Human-Rights-Watch report “Losing Humanity – The Case against Killer Robots” argues that the future development of “killer robots” – fully autonomous weapon systems – will bare risks for humanitarian law and civilians in armed conflict. However, the growing debate is to large parts a “realistic” description of the plot of science-fiction-movies dealing with the topic. The report states that such weapons “could be developed within 20 to 30 years” which exactly corresponds to the time set of e.g. the movies “I, Robot” from 2004 taking place in 2035 and the new “Robocop” from 2014 taking place in 2028. Those movies deal with the potential future problems of artificial intelligence and autonomous weapons systems in question. Apparently, the ongoing “killer-robots”-debate on the international level and science-fictions-movies about this topic are part of the very same discourse on future dangers of such weapons which I call alluding to Jutta Weldes the “dystopia/science-fiction intertext”. The intertext engages in the devastating consequences of technological-scientific progress for our society, which has not occurred yet. Therefore, those movies should be taken seriously, since they help activists organized for example in the “Campaign to Stop Killer Robots” to normalize and naturalize a techno-phobic perspective being critical of technological progress and development. In the paper I will first make some theoretical and methodological points concerning IR and popular culture before secondly describing the ongoing debate on killer robots. Then, thirdly by coming to the science-fiction-movies I will shed light on the dystopia/science-fiction intertext in order to fourthly deconstruct the inherent technophobia of this discourse.

Kommentar zu Killer Robots und Dystopie

Auf dem Blog “MNU Planet” veröffentlichte ich einen Kommentar zur Verbindung von Tödlichen Autonomen Waffensystemen und dystopischen Science-Fiction-Filmen mit dem Titel: “The Dystopian Science-Fiction Link to Killer Robots”.

This article is published as part of Fridays With MUNPlanet, and its special series dedicated to world politics. The aim of this series is to bring you the analysis of global affairs by the established and upcoming scholars, decision-makers and policy analysts from various world regions. This week, Isabella Hermannin her article tackles the problem of lethal authonomous weapons (LAWS) and discusses the key positions in the current public campaigns and early discussions about what these robots could mean in the future. The author argues that “the discussion about killer robots is a science fiction discourse which literally is about future technological implications, even though the course is set right now”, and points to the key questions that may raise ethical and practical considerations , and concludes that “the development of LAWS has fundamental ethical and strategic implications, but science-fiction-movies are just and action-loaded and effect-hasing dystopian version of the future not a logical consequence of using machines in war and combat zones.”