Warring with Machines: Military Applications of Artificial Intelligence and the Relevance of Virtue Ethics

Warring with Machines: Military Applications of Artificial Intelligence and the Relevance of Virtue Ethics
Photo: Pixabay
Led by Gregory M. Reichberg
Jan 2020 - Dec 2023

Artificial intelligence plays an ever-expanding role in the context of war. This project aims to determine how the moral integrity and agency of military personnel may be preserved and enhanced when artificial intelligence is implemented in practices of war. 

​The project will pursue this goal from the perspective of virtue ethics, philosophy of action and mind, and applied military ethics, in close dialogue with institutional stakeholders as well as technologists and representatives from cognitive neuroscience. 

Its three main research questions are as follows:

  1. How does AI technology change the way we think about the moral character of military personnel?
  2. How can we understand the nature of AI technology/tools, and how do these tools change the moral and psychological conditions for virtuous behavior?
  3. What does "virtuous human-AI interaction" mean in different parts of the military?

The project is built up around a unique institutional collaboration between leading national and international research institutions within the fields of military ethics, the philosophy of mind, and artificial intelligence research, as well as key military training institutions and technology manufacturers. 

Project leader

  • Greg Reichberg
 

Project members at PRIO 

  • Henrik Syse
  • Mareile Kaufman
  • A full time PhD researcher
 

External project members

  • Kirsi Helkala, Norwegian Defense University College
  • Einar Bøhn  and Morten Goodwin, Center for AI Research (University of Agder)
  • Sebastian Watzl, Center for Philosophy and the Sciences (University of Oslo)
  • Martin Cook and George Lucas, US Naval Academy 
  • Shannon French, Case Western Reserve University
  • Shannon Vallor, Santa Clara University
  • Peter Dombrowski, US Naval War College
  • Ophelia Deroy, Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich.