The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) has prompted profound excitement about the potential benefits of new technologies, from driving breakthroughs in medical science to tackling human trafficking and climate change. However, this growth has also given rise to deep-seated fears about the societal and economic disruptions that AI systems might bring.
This research programme aims to systematically assess both the risks and the benefits. These include the role of AI technologies in the automation of paid and unpaid work, the proliferation of algorithmic management practices and reduced autonomy across organizations, rising inequality, as well as the possibility for social unrest and political backlash. But they also include the possibility that AI will supercharge innovation, create new jobs and industries, boost productivity and resilience, and improve opportunities for education and reskilling.
These challenges are not limited to one sector or workforce, but affect the future of work from low paid and unpaid work to skilled professionals and knowledge workers. They also affect sectors ranging from manufacturing and retail to journalism, education and the creative industries.
To shed light on these pertinent issues, this programme, supported by the Dieter Schwarz Foundation, enables researchers at the Oxford Internet Institute to undertake an ambitious programme of research dedicated to investigating these impacts of AI and other cutting-edge technologies. It supports projects from faculty members and doctoral students for projects within this research area. It also enables our research partnership with the Technical University of Munich Campus Heilbronn on these topics.