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Anton Korinek – Darden/UVa – Brown Bag Series
22 October 2018 @ 1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
The Rise of Artificially Intelligent Agents
Rapid advances in AI imply that machines increasingly behave like artificially intelligent agents (AIAs). This raises fundamental questions about what an economy with AIAs will look like – questions that stretch from the allocation of resources between humans and non-humans to the potential for an existential race. Generalizing the concept of agency, we develop a framework that describes humans and AIAs symmetrically as goal-oriented entities that each absorb scarce resources, contribute to the economy, exhibit defined behavior and are subject to laws of motion. We show that what matters for AIAs to play an independent role in the economy is that they can exert effective control over resources – independently of whether they have any formal legal rights such as being emancipated. We describe scenarios in which competition over scarce factors eventually reduces human absorption. In the limit case of an AIA-only economy, AIAs both produce and absorb large quantities of output without any role for humans. Finally, we discuss a number of recent economic trends that we interpret as harbingers of the rise of AIAs.