Ethics in AI


This resources page contains organised links to seminar talks and podcasts from events at Oxford.  It starts with overviews of the AI Ethics context at Oxford, before proceeding to specific issues in AI Ethics.


For forthcoming events, click on the “Events” tab above
For a list of past events, click on the “Past Events” tab above

Ethics and AI in Oxford

We start with a talk from Sir Nigel Shadbolt, setting the scene for the planned Institute for Ethics in AI within the Faculty of Philosophy.  This placement within Philosophy is discussed by Carissa Véliz, and we then have talks outlining relevant research at four major existing centres and institutes within Oxford.

Background and Aims of the Institute for Ethics in AI’, Nigel Shadbolt

The place of philosophy in the Ethics of AI’, Carissa Véliz

Research on Ethics and AI at the Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics, Tom Douglas

Research on Ethics and AI at the Oxford Internet Institute, Vicki Nash

Research on Ethics and AI at the Big Data Institute, Gil McVean

Research on Ethics and AI at the Wellcome Centre for Ethics and Humanities, Mike Parker


Issues in the Ethics of AI

The breadth and complexity of the field can be seen from the alphabetical list of headings below.  Some of these have already been discussed in talks at Oxford; others are planned for the future.

Algorithmic bias

Futuremakers discussion on algorithmic bias, with Sandra Wachter, Helena Webb, Brent Mittelstadt

Futuremakers discussion on AI and gender, with Gina Neff, Carissa Véliz, Sian Brooke

Artificial Moral Agents

Coming soon, watch this space.

Automation and employment

Capital, Labour, and Power in the Age of Automation’, Carl Benedikt Frey

Futuremakers discussion on automation of jobs, with Mike Osborne, Judy Stephenson, David Clifton

Autonomy and AI

Autonomy, ethics, and AI’, Carina Prunkl

Coding ethics

Coming soon, watch this space.

Ethics, AI, Corporations, and Finance

AI and Finance’, Nir Vulkan:

AI and Business’, Alan Morrison:

Futuremakers discussion on AI and banking, with Steve Roberts, Nir Vulkan, Jannes Klaas

Existential risk

Futuremakers discussion on AI and the future of humanity, with Allan Dafoe, Mike Osborne, Jade Leung

Healthcare and AI

Ethics of AI in healthcare’, Jess Morley

Ethics, AI, and the Use of Data in Medical Imagining’, Claire Bloomfield

Population Health and AI’, Angeliki Kerasidou

Futuremakers discussion on AI and health, with Alison Noble, Paul Leeson, and Jess Morley

Legal and Policy issues

Values and AI: A View From Public Policy’, Jo Wolff and Vafa Ghazavi

When AI Disrupts the Law’, Sandra Wachter

Reuniting Ethics and the Law’, Brent Mittelstadt

AI Governance and Ethics’, Allan Dafoe

News and Propaganda

Computational propaganda’, Vidya Narayanan

AI and the News’, Rasmus Kleis Nielsen

Futuremakers discussion on finding the truth, with Rasmus Nielsen, Vidya Narayanan, Mimie Liotsiou


Coming soon, watch this space.


Coming soon, watch this space.

Social Context of AI

Use, users, and the social context for AI’, Gina Neff


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The Ethics in AI Seminar series brings together experts from a wide range of academic disciplines at Oxford to discuss the ethical challenges posed by AI. The first three Ethics in AI Seminars were held in late 2019 and early 2020, attracting more than 350 students and academics from more than 30 academic departments. The seminars are convened by Peter Millican, Professor of Philosophy at Oxford, who describes their background and role as follows:

“Over the last decade, concerns about the power and danger of Artificial Intelligence have moved from the fantasy of ‘Terminator’ to reality, and anxieties about killer robots have been joined by many others that are more immediate. Robotic systems threaten a massive disruption of employment and transport, while algorithms fuelled by machine learning on (potentially biased) ‘big data’ increasingly play a role in life-changing decisions, whether financial, legal, or medical. More subtly, AI combines with social media to give huge potential for the manipulation of opinion and behaviour, whether to sell a product, influence financial markets, provoke divisive factionalism, or fix an election. All of this has raised huge ethical questions, some fairly familiar (e.g. concerning privacy, information security, appropriate rules of automated behaviour) but many quite new (e.g. concerning algorithmic bias, transparency, and wider impacts). 

Oxford has a wealth of researchers in relevant fields, scattered through numerous University departments – including Philosophy, Computer Science, Engineering, Social Science, and Medicine – and also a wide range of specialist ‘centres’ and ‘institutes’. But hitherto, this rich number and variety of researchers has tended to lack any integrating focus, with those in one part of the University sometimes unaware of those elsewhere, even while working in closely cognate areas. It is against this background that Oxford is creating an Institute for AI Ethics, to promote broad conversation between relevant researchers and students across the entire University, and thus to generate a coherent powerhouse of AI Ethics which will be more than the sum of its (already impressive) parts. These seminars are the first formal activities of this new initiative, but we envisage them as an ongoing part of it, inspiring and nurturing interdisciplinary discussion and collaboration into the future.”

Click here to see our podcasts about AI.



Peter Millican

Gilbert Ryle Fellow and Professor of Philosophy, Hertford College, Oxford