IFIP Annual General Assembly Elects New President-elect and Vice President,
Endorses Global Ban on Autonomous Weapons
Monday 12 October 2015 – Daejeon, Seoul: The annual General Assembly of IFIP, the global body for ICT professionals and computer scientists, has elected a new President-elect and Vice President as well as lending its weight to an Open Letter calling for a Ban on Autonomous Weapons.
Mike Hinchey of Ireland, who has been serving as Vice President responsible for the Technical Assembly, has been selected to take over as IFIP President when current President Leon Strous completes his term in September 2016. Kai Rannenberg of Germany has immediately replaced Mr Hinchey as Vice President, with Mr Hinchey stepping into the President-elect role.
The IFIP meeting, which was timed to follow last week’s IFIP World Computer Congress 2015 in Daejeon, South Korea, also passed a formal motion endorsing an Open Letter calling for a worldwide ban on offensive autonomous weapons beyond meaningful human control.
The letter, which already has the support of industry luminaries including Stephen Hawking of Cambridge University, Tesla’s Elon Musk, Apple’s Steve Wozniak, Skype co-founder, Jaan Tallinn, and Noam Chomsky of MIT along with 20,000 Artificial Intelligence researchers, scientists and others, was announced on 28 July at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) 2015 Conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
In speaking to the motion, IFIP Vice president Max Bramer, himself a 40 year veteran of the Artificial Intelligence industry, said any moves to develop autonomous weapons would create conditions for a global arms race because they would be as readily available to terrorists and assassins as to legitimate governments.
“The GA endorses the concerns expressed in the letter, including the dangers involved in a global AI arms race and calls for a worldwide ban on offensive autonomous weapons that are beyond meaningful human control,” he said.
The motion was passed unanimously.
The original Open Letter can be found here http://futureoflife.org/AI/open_letter_autonomous_weapons
IFIP, the International Federation for Information Processing, is the global professional federation of societies and associations for people working in Information and Communications Technologies and Sciences. Established under the auspices of UNESCO in 1960 and recognised by the United Nations, IFIP represents ICT professional associations from more than 50 countries and regions with a total membership of over half a million. It also brings together more than 3,500 scientists from industry and academia, organising them into over 100 Working Groups and 13 Technical Committees to conduct research, develop standards and promote information sharing. Based in Austria, IFIP organises and supports over 100 conferences each year, fostering the distribution of research and knowledge to academics and industry practitioners alike.
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