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Female Entrepreneur insights on AI: what are the moral dilemmas?

AI’s growth is infinite, but what are the moral dilemmas and how do we overcome these? Nicole Junkermann is an international tech investor with an impressive portfolio and deep sector expertise. 

‘Intelligence’ in this context is the ability to make predictions and perform specific tasks – laptops, drones, robots all use it and function via algorithms. The use of AI is essential, not least because it is easily able to outpace humans in its performance of tasks both basic and complex. However, the pace with which AI is developing has presented society with numerous ethical dilemmas.  

Is AI biased?

The first dilemma is that AI can be inherently biased. AI software is focused on processing data into knowledge, but lacks a moral compass or an understanding of abstract concepts such as discrimination, racism, and inequality. For example, law enforcement officers in the US noticed that software used to predict the likelihood of prisoners reoffending gave distinctively higher probabilities to inmates from minority backgrounds, even when their criminal history was limited. The software had to be manually amended by engineers and illustrated the importance of human morals and oversight of AI. 

AI a few years back

To distinguish interactions with other computers or humans is becoming increasingly difficult. In 2015, an AI software named “Eugene Goostman” won the Turing Challenge by fooling the judges into believing they were conversing with another human being. Not only does this illustrate a blurring of the lines between what is human and what is not, but it presents the possibility that humans will no longer need to form relationships with each other when AI is equally able to do so. AI is not limited to the amount of love, attention, or care it can give, and so risks being able to replace humans in many forms of relationship. Is it morally acceptable to allow the development of artificial relationships and risk the creation of a solitary society?  

These issues are important because humans will share society with AI-based machines. Unlike human relationship with animals, we may not control them entirely, especially where super-intelligent machines operate outside of human remit. In my opinion, the solution lies in ensuring that AI machines are calibrated to align with our own moral and human values. Value alignment will help to carve a digital consciousness which parallels and connects with that of the living. Naturally, the difficulty will lie in agreeing which human values to prioritise.  

The future of AI

Artificial intelligence will revolutionise almost every industry and every part of the human experience. I have seen the benefits AI has had within the healthcare industry.. They transform data into knowledge by building collective intelligence from distributed data, and use this to provide personalised treatments, improve detection rates, and accelerate diagnoses.  

It has been fascinating learning about and witnessing the benefits of AI, but I am conscious of the moral dilemmas is presents humanity.  

Nicole Junkermann is a leading international entrepreneur and investor, focused on disrupting traditional business models through industry-defining technologies. Junkermann is the founder and Principal of NJF Holdings, a London-based private investment company with a portfolio across Europe, the U.S., and Asia. NJF Capital, the venture capital of NJF Holdings, has assembled an investment portfolio of more than 40 companies across industries as diverse as healthcare, FinTech, FoodTech, and Deep Tech. With experience sitting across both sides of the investment table, Junkermann brings a unique perspective to identifying visionary entrepreneurs with pioneering business ideas.