Dubito ergo sum: exploring AI ethics

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We paraphrase Descartes’ famous dictum in the area of AI ethics where the “I doubt and therefore I am” is suggested as a necessary aspect of morality. Therefore AI, which cannot doubt itself, cannot possess moral agency. Of course, this is not the end of the story. We explore various aspects of the human mind that substantially differ from AI, which includes the sensory grounding of our knowing, the act of understanding, and the significance of being able to doubt ourselves. The foundation of our argument is the discipline of ethics, one of the oldest and largest knowledge projects of human history, yet, we seem only to be beginning to get a grasp of it. After a couple of thousand years of studying the ethics of humans, we (humans) arrived at a point where moral psychology suggests that our moral decisions are intuitive, and all the models from ethics become relevant only when we explain ourselves. This recognition has a major impact on what and how we can do regarding AI ethics. We do not offer a solution, we explore some ideas and leave the problem open, but we hope somewhat better understood than before our study.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 6 Jan 2024
EventHawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS): HICSS 2024 - Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, Honolulu, United States
Duration: 3 Jan 20246 Jan 2024


ConferenceHawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS)
Abbreviated titleHICSS-57
Country/TerritoryUnited States
Internet address


  • artificial Intelligence
  • ethics
  • AI ethics


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