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Using (un)fair algorithms in an unjust world

On Wednesday, June 1st Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen will give a presentation on using (un)fair algorithms in an unjust world at The Philosophy Department at the University of Oregon. The presentation is part of the "Data Ethics Conversation Series".

Abstract: Algorithm-assisted decision procedures – including some of the most high-profiled ones, such as COMPAS – have been described as unfair because they compound injustice. The complaint is that in such procedures a decision disadvantaging members of a certain group is based on information reflecting the fact that the members of the group have already been unjustly disadvantaged. I assess this reasoning. First, I distinguish the anti-compounding duty from a related but distinct duty – the proportionality duty – from which at least some of the intuitive appeal of the former illegitimately derives. Second, I distinguish between different versions of the anti-compounding duty, arguing that, on some versions, uses of algorithm- assisted decision procedures rarely clash with the anti-compounding duty. Third, drawing on examples of algorithm-assisted decision procedures, I present three objections to the idea that there is a reason not to compound injustice. The most important of these is that one can compound injustice in a non-disrespectful way, and that the wrongfulness of non-disrespectfully compounding injustice is fully explained by the proportionality duty

You can read more about the series here: Data Ethics | Department of Philosophy (uoregon.edu)