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Artificial Intelligence and Human Flourishing


  • Charles M. A. Clark
  • Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan


The polarization of the debate about artificial intelligence (AI) pulls in two mutually exclusive directions of either complete takeover of future jobs by omnipotent algorithms or an absolute bliss with robots at work while humans reap the benefits of endless vacation. Add this to conflicting views of work as either a disutility to be minimized or as an essential component in human flourishing, and it is no wonder a wide range of views are expressed on AI and human flourishing. The literature, from Smith to Keynes and beyond, offers some initial methodological guidance. Still, the true social and economic implications of an AI‐type environment in production and labor markets are yet to be fully understood. This article argues that neither of the predictions are realistic. Instead, the global economy may be passing, albeit at a faster speed, through a phase of technological change, similar to those experienced before. While a nuanced balance is emerging, with an emphasis on human skills in future employment, the benefits may not be equitably distributed, as equality of opportunities for human development may not be reachable, though visible, in the AI‐driven society. Hence, as firms seek efficiency gains, much weight is shifted onto governments and quasi‐private entities in maintaining decent living standards conducive to human flourishing in unprecedented times of the COVID‐19 pandemic. The article reviews various popular concerns and advances new public policy measures aimed at tackling some of the immediate fears of automation.

Suggested Citation

  • Charles M. A. Clark & Aleksandr V. Gevorkyan, 2020. "Artificial Intelligence and Human Flourishing," American Journal of Economics and Sociology, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 79(4), pages 1307-1344, September.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:ajecsc:v:79:y:2020:i:4:p:1307-1344
    DOI: 10.1111/ajes.12356

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    References listed on IDEAS

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    2. Vyacheslav Volchik & Elena Maslyukova & Wadim Strielkowski, 2023. "Perception of Scientific and Social Values in the Sustainable Development of National Innovation Systems," Social Sciences, MDPI, vol. 12(4), pages 1-18, April.
    3. Juan Carlos Henao & Liliana López-Jiménez, 2021. "Disrupción tecnológica, transformación digital y sociedad. Tomo IV, Aires de revolución : nuevos desafíos tecnológicos a las instituciones económicas, financieras y organizacionales de nuestros tiempo," Books, Universidad Externado de Colombia, Facultad de Derecho, number 1283, April.
    4. Vlačić, Božidar & Corbo, Leonardo & Costa e Silva, Susana & Dabić, Marina, 2021. "The evolving role of artificial intelligence in marketing: A review and research agenda," Journal of Business Research, Elsevier, vol. 128(C), pages 187-203.

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