Katyal on Democracy and Distrust in an Era of Artificial Intelligence

Sonia Katyal (UC Berkeley School of Law) has posted “Democracy and Distrust in an Era of Artificial Intelligence” (Daedalus, Journal of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences 2022) on SSRN. Here is the abstract:

Our legal system has historically operated under the general view that courts should defer to the legislature. There is one significant exception to this view: cases in which it appears that the political process has failed to recognize the rights or interests of minorities. This basic approach provides much of the foundational justifications for the role of judicial review in protecting minorities from discrimination by the legislature. Today, the rise of AI decision-making poses a similar challenge to democracy’s basic framework. As I argue in this essay, the rise of three trends–privatization, prediction, and automation in AI–have combined to pose similar risks to minorities. In this essay, I outline what a theory of judicial review would look like in an era of artificial intelligence, analyzing both the limitations and the possibilities of judicial review of AI. Here, I draw on cases in which AI decision-making has been challenged in courts, to show how concepts of due process and equal protection can be recuperated in a modern AI era, and even integrated into AI, to provide for better oversight and accountability.