Artificial Intelligence (AI) is an emergent set of computer technologies that affect individuals, communities, and societies at a global scale. Touted as a fourth industrial revolution, AI is, nonetheless, poorly understood and subject to hype, misinformation, and anxiety. Though there is increasing talk about making AI “ethical,” “democratic,” and “human-centered,” scholars in the humanities seldom shape these discussions. The result is conversations about AI that lack fundamental understanding of this profoundly social and cultural phenomenon. At the same time, AI research and implementation need collaborative and interdisciplinary approaches to envision new thinking, anticipate social and environmental outcomes, shape forward-thinking policies, engage broad publics, and educate a new generation of students and citizens.
Critical AI began as a new interdisciplinary initiative at Rutgers University, organized and led through a steering committee with support from the Center for Cultural Analysis and the Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science. To learn more about that ongoing initiative, including its events, working groups, international partnerships, curricular experiments, and grant-related activities, please see this RU website. To learn more about Critical AI, a new journal and web platform that we are in the process of launching, please email us.