Tag Archives: Science-Fiction

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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Science-Fiction auf der ISA Toronto

Auf der ISA General Conference in Toronto (#ISA2019) vom 27. bis 30. März 2019 präsentierte ich mein Papier “Utopia or Dystopia? Is technological development science-fiction?”


By the end of 2010 a series of anti-government protests against non-democratic, non-liberal regimes started from Tunisia and spread to other countries including Libya, Egypt and Syria. Social media was identified as the driving force behind those protests called the “Arab spring” (Howard 2011). Thus, generally, the progress of the digital age in information communication technologies (ICT) was praised to topple regimes, increase transparency and allow those who have been marginalized, discriminated and excluded before to be part of an inclusive democratic process. Technology was seen as the chance to enable liberal democratic principles and human rights to come to the fore as a universal identity and value.

However, all technological progress which can be used to strengthen democratic values can equally be used to counter them. Soon disillusionment set in – in the Western the same as in the Arab world. Not only that the regimes reacted by shutting down certain websites, social forums or the internet completely. Around the globe new technology including digitalization, the internet, platforms and AI enable filter bubbles, echo chambers and manipulative voter targeting in social media thus endangering the very core concepts of democracies (Thiel 2018). New technologies provide states and corporations with tools for social profiling, scoring and digital surveillance, and facilitate a “global surveillance bureaucracy” (Castells 2018).

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Warum künstliche Intelligenz keine Science-Fiction ist

Auf der Konferenz “Ist die Zukunft demokratisch? – Demokratie, Sicherheit, Technologie” des Netzwerkes “Women in International Security” (WIIS) in der Bayerischen Landesvertretung am 15. November 2018 erklärte ich, warum künstliche Intelligenz keine Science-Fiction ist.


Auf der Konferenz feierten 200 Gäste aus Politik, Wissenschaft, Wirtschaft, internationalen Organisationen, Kultur und Medien das 15-jährige Jubiläum von WIIS.

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 als Boundary Management

Ende Oktober 2018 wurde mein Beitrag “Boundaries and Otherness in Science-Fiction: We Cannot Escape the Human Condition” in Text Matters, Volume 8, Number 8, 2018 veröffentlicht. Unten der Abstrakt, den ganzen Artikel gibt es Open Access hier.

Abstract: The article explores the construction of boundaries, alterity and otherness in modern science-fiction (SF) films. Boundaries, understood as real state borders, territoriality and sovereignty, as well as the construction of the other beyond an imagined border and delimited space, have a significant meaning in the dystopian settings of SF. Even though SF topics are not bound to the contemporary environment, be it of a historical, technical or ethical nature, they do relate to the present-day world and transcend our well-known problems. Therefore, SF offers a pronounced discourse about current social challenges under extreme conditions such as future technological leaps, encounters with the alien other or the end of the world. At the same time the genre enables us to play through future challenges that might really happen. Films like Equilibrium (2002), Code 46 (2003), Children of Men (2006) and District 9 (2009) show that in freely constructed cinematic settings we are not only unable to escape from our border conflicts, but quite the contrary, we take them everywhere with us, even to an alternative present or into the future, where new precarious situations of otherness are constructed.

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

Berlin SciFi-Filmfest 2018


Isabella Hermann, Sven Schmeier und Aleksandra Sowa beim Berlin SciFi-Filmfest 2018

Tweet Aleksandra Sowa (@kryptomania)

Am 16. und 17. November fand die zweite Ausgabe des internationalen Berlin SciFi-Filmfest im Babylon in Berlin Mitte statt: Zweite Tage lang gab es Lang- und Kurzfilme in allen Science-Fiction-Genres, Panels und Workshops, Podcasts und Cosplayer und spannende Gespräche mit Filmemachern und Besuchern – Infos auf Facebook und Twitter @BScifi

Besonders freue ich mich, als Mitglied der Jury bei der Auswahl der Filme und Preisträger dabei gewesen zu sein und am 16. November die Paneldiskussion “AI in films – What is science, what is fiction?” mit den zwei Experten Dr. Aleksandra Sowa und Dr. Sven Schmeier moderiert zu haben! Für ihren Filmblog Martha’s Film Corner gab ich Martha ein Interview zu “What will A.I do with our data”.