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The Artificial Intelligence and Society discussion group is an interdisciplinary group, set up to discuss the social and ethical implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Autonomous Systems. Our members are drawn from several departments at the University of Otago, including Computer Science, Information Science, Philosophy, Law, Economics, Psychology, Zoology, Linguistics, and HEDC (the Higher Education Development Centre). The group has over 40 members; some of those who have given presentations are shown below.


  • We run a regular seminar series - see below on this page for a record of the seminars that have taken place.
    If you would like to be on the mailing list for these seminars, please contact Alistair Knott (alik at cs dot otago dot ac dot nz)
  • We also maintain two lists:
  • Some of our members also run a project on Artificial Intelligence and Law in New Zealand, funded by the NZ Law Foundation. The project runs from 2017 to 2019.
  • The Otago Business School has a group of diverse people with interests that relate to Autonomous Systems and Society (PDF). The group, which has now merged with this group, held a workshop on 14th December 2017. This workshop concluded with an open-to-the-public discussion on Autonomous Systems and Society. A second workshop featuring high-profile international visitors is planned for the first half of September, 2018.


Introductory/General seminars

  • The 1st workshop of the Otago Business School group on Autonomous Systems and Society was held of 14th December 2017. Discussion covered a range of topics. Group members (alphabetical): Ben Wooliscroft, Diane Ruwhiu, John Williams, Lincoln Wood, Michael Winikoff (PI), Murat Genc, Nathan Berg, Neil Carr, Paula O’Kane, Sara Walton, Sebastian Filep, Stephen Cranefield, Steven Grover, Tony Garry, Tony Savarimuthu.

Seminars surveying the state of the art in AI, and prospects for the near future

Seminars introducing some frameworks for discussing AI technologies

Seminars on recent developments in AI ethics / AI and society

Seminars on 'Strong AI'


AI and semiautomated control

AI approaches to Ethics

  • Seminar 17: Some Social Implications of Intelligent Systems and Affective/Pervasive Computing (Jeremy Pitt, Imperial College London)

Uses of AI in elections

AI and employment

AI in the criminal justice system

Explainable/trustable/verified AI

Papers presenting the group's discussions