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Harm to Nonhuman Animals from AI: a Systematic Account and Framework

Reference Type: 

Journal Article

Coghlan, Simon, and Christine Parker. 2023. “Harm to Nonhuman Animals from AI: A Systematic Account and Framework.” Philosophy & Technology 36 (2): 25.

This paper provides a systematic account of how artificial intelligence (AI) technologies could harm nonhuman animals and explains why animal harms, often neglected in AI ethics, should be better recognised. After giving reasons for caring about animals and outlining the nature of animal harm, interests, and wellbeing, the paper develops a comprehensive ‘harms framework’ which draws on scientist David Fraser’s influential mapping of human activities that impact on sentient animals. The harms framework is fleshed out with examples inspired by both scholarly literature and media reports. This systematic account and framework should help inform ethical analyses of AI’s impact on animals and serve as a comprehensive and clear basis for the development and regulation of AI technologies to prevent and mitigate harm to nonhumans.

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