Can we trust the robots? Why we need regulation to secure public trust in robotics and AI

Professor Alan Winfield, Bristol Robotics Laboratory and Director of Science Communication, University of West of England

We’re generally inclined to trust technology if it brings benefits, is safe, well-regulated and, when accidents do happen, subject to robust investigation. We trust airliners, for example, because they are part of a highly regulated industry with an excellent safety record.  In his presentation Alan will put forward the case that responsible robotics needs similarly strong ethical governance and will outline a new framework for the regulation of robotics and AI.

  • Trains, planes and automobiles – should we create a Civil Aviation Authority equivalent to govern autonomous vehicles?
  • The role the regulator – consumer protection and public trust

In 1984, shortly after completing a PhD in digital communications Alan resigned his lectureship at the University of Hull, to co-found APD – a company committed to the commercialisation of patented research in high-performance computer architectures and the delivery of contract research and development for safety-critical communication systems.  He remains a non-executive director, but left APD in 1992 to become Associate Dean and Professor of Electronic Engineering at the University of the West of England. He is a chartered engineer and a renowned specialist in robotics, AI and intelligent autonomous systems.