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Ethical Machines: Your Concise Guide to Totally Unbiased, Transparent, and Respectful AI Spiral-Bound | July 12, 2022

Reid Blackman

★★★☆☆+ from Up to 30 ratings

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What will you do when your AI misbehaves?

The promise of artificial intelligence is automated decision-making at scale, but that means AI also automates risk at scale. Are you prepared for that risk?

Already, many companies have suffered real damage when their algorithms led to discriminatory, privacy-invading, and even deadly outcomes. Self-driving cars have hit pedestrians; HR algorithms have precluded women from job searches; mortgage systems have denied loans to qualified minorities. And often the companies who deployed the AI couldn't explain why the black box made the decision it did.

In this environment, AI ethics isn't merely an academic curiosity, it's a business necessity. In Ethical Machines, Reid Blackman gives you all you need to understand AI ethics as a risk management challenge. He'll help you build, procure, and deploy AI in a way that's not only ethical but also safe in terms of your organization's reputation, regulatory compliance, and legal standing—and do it at scale.

And don't worry—the book's purpose is to get work done, not to ponder deep and existential questions about ethics and technology. Blackman's clear and accessible writing helps make a complex and often misunderstood concept like ethics easy to grasp. Most importantly, Blackman makes ethics actionable by tackling the big three ethical risks with AI—bias, explainability, and privacy—and tells you what to do (and what not to do) to mitigate them.

With practical approaches to everything from writing a strong statement of AI ethics principles to creating teams that effectively evaluate ethical risks, Ethical Machines is the one guide you need to ensure your AI advances your company's objectives instead of undermining them.

Publisher: Harvard Business Review Press
Original Binding: Hardcover
Pages: 224 pages
ISBN-10: 1647822815
Item Weight: 1.11 lbs
Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.67 x 9.3 inches
Customer Reviews: 3 out of 5 stars Up to 30 ratings

Advance Praise for Ethical Machines:

"Finally! A book that demystifies how to responsibly manage AI and does it in an engaging, succinct, and practical way. This is a must-read for anyone embarking on a machine learning journey. Blackman is a true expert in AI ethics, and this book is an indispensable resource." — Siobhan Hanna, Managing Director, AI Data Solutions, TELUS International Artificial Intelligence

"An excellent read that turns a complex topic into understandable and actionable components. Business leaders need to understand that AI ethics isn't just hand-waving. It poses real risks to brand and profit. Fortunately, Blackman is outstanding at laying out how you should think about AI ethics and the steps you should take." — Joel Shapiro, Professor, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University

"Reid Blackman's new book, Ethical Machines, is a fresh contribution to the complex challenge of putting AI ethics into practice. Using vivid examples and accessible storytelling, Blackman introduces an actionable framework for comprehensive ethical risk management that will help companies avoid critical pitfalls as they incorporate AI into their products and processes." — Cara LaPointe, PhD, Codirector, Johns Hopkins Institute for Assured Autonomy; author, The Blockchain Ethical Design Framework

"Companies of all stripes are increasingly looking to use AI and hoping to build it ethically and responsibly. In this charming book, Reid Blackman provides practical guidance to turn these hopes into a reality." — David Danks, Professor, Data Science & Philosophy, University of California, San Diego

Reid Blackman, PhD, is the founder and CEO of Virtue, where he works with companies to integrate ethical risk mitigation into the development, procurement, and deployment of emerging technology products. He sat on EY's AI Advisory Board, is a member of IEEE's Ethically Aligned Design Initiative, and volunteers as the Chief Ethics Officer for the non-profit Government Blockchain Association.

Blackman is a sought-after speaker on AI ethics. His work has been profiled in the Wall Street Journal, and he has contributed multiple pieces to Harvard Business Review, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and other outlets.

Prior to founding Virtue, Blackman was a professor of philosophy at Colgate University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He also founded a fireworks wholesaling company and was once a flying trapeze instructor.

Connect with Reid Blackman at and or follow him on Twitter @reidblackman.