On September 1st, 2020, The United Nations Institute for Disarmament Research (UNIDIR) published a new report on Modernizing arms control, Exploring Responses to the Use of AI in Military Decision-Making.
‘‘This report provides an initial insight into why the international security community may need to consider regulating artificial intelligence (AI) applications that fall in the digital grey zone between AI-enabled weapon systems (e.g. lethal autonomous weapon systems) and military uses of civilian AI applications (e.g. logistics, transport). It also provides an initial exploration of the familiar tools the community has at its disposal for such regulation.’’
Lethal autonomous weapons (LAWS) were the object of rigorous debates in International Law. First, within the Group of Governmental Experts (GEE) on emerging technologies in the area of lethal autonomous weapons systems (GGE LAWS) over the last decade and secondly, over the target of the Stop Killer Robots Campaign. This report provides an insightful and exhaustive summary of the different positions and dynamic surrounding LAWS. In that sense, the next GGE Laws 2020 will take place between the 21-25 of September and the 2nd – 6 November 2020, in Geneva, for the Second Session.
The UNIDIR’s report presents key elements and an overview of LAWS concrete applications. It also provides tools to remedy to any potential breaches and harms caused by AI military-system, including military-systems using civilian AI applications.
The report is divided into five sections:
- giving an exhaustive overview of the global military interest in AI
- framing the current policy regulations
- tackling issues inherent to AI military applications
- conceptualizing arms control for AI
- giving toolboxes dedicated to strengthen AI military decision-making and define its limitations