Call: “AI and its Discontents” issue of Interdisciplinary Science Reviews

Artificial Intelligence and its Discontents
Call for Papers for a special issue of Interdisciplinary Science Reviews

Guest Editor: Colin Shunryu Garvey, Fellow, Human-Centered AI Institute, Stanford University

Deadline for abstracts: November 15, 2019

This is increasingly the Age of AI. Artificial Intelligence, the suite of technologies that make machines capable of performing tasks considered “intelligent” when performed by people, is colonizing an increasing number of domains, from Internet search and social media to the natural sciences and even criminal sentencing. AI may soon become ubiquitous, coextensive with civilization itself, a taken-for-granted feature of modernity like electricity or running water.

But this does not mean that all is well: AI has, and has always had, its discontents; those who doubt, question, challenge, reject, reform and otherwise reprise “AI” as it is practiced and promoted. With the hope of scaffolding deeper understandings of both the epochal transformations being wrought by AI technologies and the range of responses these changes, this special issue of Interdisciplinary Science Reviews will bring together reflections from practitioners, assessments from scientists in fields transformed by AI, and historically-informed accounts of AI and its critics, both past and present, in order to capture something of the significance of this historical moment for future generations.

A few questions worth pondering might be:

  • Who are AI’s discontented and how have they contended with the technology’s advance?
  • How has AI been challenged in areas from scientific knowledge production to daily life?
  • What is being left out of the increasingly dominant “machine learning” paradigm, and why?
  • Where is the line drawn between “AI” and everything else, and who patrols that boundary?
  • Why has criticism regarded differently in AI than in other technosciences?

Contributions can range in length from reflective contributions of only a few pages to full research articles (maximum of 8000 words including citations and references, in most cases). The deadline for abstracts is November 15, 2019. Final papers will be collected January 15, 2020. The issue will be finalized by mid-March and sent to press for a projected June 2020 release.

Please contact Colin Shunryu Garvey with any questions or proposals:


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