The explosion of AI capabilities and other emerging technologies is clearly transforming the practice of law. Can these technologies also be leveraged to prepare students for an evolving job market? Working closely with our partners at Thomson Reuters, we at Above the Law have been exploring the impact of AI and other technologies on law schools. We now invite you to explore Cognifying Legal Education, the first in a four-part, multimedia exploration of how artificial intelligence and similar innovations are reshaping the legal profession: Law2020.
Human biases can become part of the technology people create, according to Nicos Savva, Associate Professor of Management Science and Operations at London Business School. A recent House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence (AI) "AI in the UK: Ready, Willing and Able?" urged people using and developing AI to put ethics centre stage. The committee suggested a cross-sector AI Code, with five principles that could be applied globally including that artificial intelligence should "be developed for the common good and benefit of humanity" and should "operate on principles of intelligibility and fairness". The committee's chairman, Lord Clement-Jones, said in a statement: "The UK has a unique opportunity to shape AI positively for the public's benefit and to lead the international community in AI's ethical development, rather than passively accept its consequences." He added that "AI is not without its risks".
Parents worry about a lot of things--like whether their children will get into college, or become drug addicts, or get abducted by strangers. But I spend a lot more time worrying that my children are going to live with us forever because robots have taken all their potential jobs. As somebody who has spent her adult life focused largely on two things--studying technology trends and raising children--I'm acutely aware of the effect that continued advances in artificial intelligence could have on my children's opportunities. After all, a recent McKinsey report predicts that by 2030, when my two children are just joining the workforce, up to 30% of today's current work will have been automated. The problem is, we don't know for certain which particular jobs will be automated years from now, because AI is constantly developing in surprising ways.
The European Union's executive body, the EC, has taken a first pass at drawing up a strategy to respond to the myriad socio-economic challenges around artificial intelligence technology -- including setting out steps intended to boost investment, support education and training, and draw up an ethical and legal framework for steering AI developments by the end of the year. It says it's hoping to be able to announce a "coordinated plan on AI" by the end of 2018, working with the bloc's 28 Member States to get there. "The main aim is to maximise the impact of investment at the EU and national levels, encourage cooperation across the EU, exchange best practices, and define the way forward together, so as to ensure the EU's global competitiveness in this sector," writes the Commission, noting it will also continue to invest in initiatives it views as "key" for AI (specifically name-checking the development of components, systems and chipsets designed to run AI operations; high-performance computers; projects related to quantum technologies; and ongoing work to map the human brain). Commenting on the strategy in a statement, the EC VP for the Digital Single Market Andrus Ansip said: "Without data, we will not make the most of artificial intelligence, high-performance computing and other technological advances. These technologies can help us to improve healthcare and education, transport networks and make energy savings: this is what the smart use of data is all about.
As a medical student, I used to enjoy the Fox show House M.D.--or at least, the first 20 minutes of the hourlong episodes. Each week, the cynical genius Dr. Gregory House would take on one new case, each seemingly more bizarre than the last. Early in the episode, House and his team would sit around a table kicking around the details of whatever mysterious ailment was afflicting their latest patient. They'd generated the so-called differential diagnosis, a list of possible conditions that should have included the real culprit. Their differential diagnosis was especially useful for a medical student because it was usually a reasonably accurate and inclusive list of the conditions that the patient ought to have had, were it not a fictional TV show.
Which statement do you believe? Robots will wipe out our jobs. AI and robotics will make everything free. These extreme viewpoints are both vying for our attention. Singularity University, which aims to solve our global grand challenges through exponential technologies, widely reports that AI is the world's cure.
ASK 100 students what they want from an MBA programme and you're likely to get 100 different answers. However, ask them what they want more of, and trends are easier to discern. At the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, a survey of the current class earlier this year asked what students wanted to learn more about. "It has rapidly consumed a lot of mental real estate with our MBA students," says Brian Uzzi, who teaches a course on AI to MBAs at Kellogg. AI has become a key tool for businesses in all industries.
Speaking verbally and performing sign language require the same parts of the brain, according to a new study. Researchers at New York University found that the neural skills needed to perform sign language are the similar to those required for speaking out loud. Their report is the first of its kind to prove the association between the two communication forms. Sign language communicators and verbal English speakers rely on the same neural skills, a new report says. The new research was published in the journal Scientific Reports.
Researchers at Mt. Sinai's Icahn School of Medicine in New York at have a unique collaborator in the hospital: Their in-house artificial intelligence system, known as Deep Patient. The researchers taught Deep Patient to predict risk factors for 78 different diseases by feeding it electronic health records from 700,000 patients. Doctors now turn to the system to aid in diagnoses. While not a person, Deep Patient is more than just a program. Like other advanced AI systems, it learns, makes autonomous decisions, and has grown from a technological tool to a partner, coordinating and collaborating with humans.
The past two decades have seen the workplace transformed by digital advances. Gone are many traditional structures and practices, replaced with new ways of doing business, designed to support collaboration and digitally-enabled remote and flexible working. As the technology behind AI and robotics becomes more sophisticated, the number of jobs that remain untouched by automation will decrease. "To keep pace, businesses must rethink how they organise work, reinvent jobs, redeploy staff and implement robust plans for the future," says Lynda Gratton, professor of management practice at London Business School (LBS). There are also emerging social trends and shifting demographics to consider.