A global observatory on AI + Defense​

The character of war is changing

The deployment of artificial intelligence in the defense sector is provoking a debate of seismic importance. RAIN+ Ethics is committed to supporting and informing the debate around the ethics of AI use in the Defense Sector.

RAIN+ Ethics disentangles the dynamics of the debate – the political, legal and ethical arguments and the implications of AI technology – provides clarification on the ethical positions and summarizes this in guidance reports. This division also maps the landscape of stakeholders and regulatory initiatives to support leaders and decision makers as they navigate the challenges of AI.


The dynamics of the debate


Ethical arguments of AI and defense


Stakeholders and regulatory initiatives

RAIN+ Primers

An introduction to the key ethical questions in AI + defense.

Primer 1 – Humanising AI

Primer 2 – Defining Autonomous Weapon Systems

Primer 3 – Ethics of Autonomous Weapon Systems

Primer 4 – Laws and Liabilities

Primer 5 – To Ban or Not to Ban

RAIN+ AI Ethics in 60 seconds

Commentary from our experts to help you get a grip on the ethical debate around AI + defense.

Video Overlay: A RAIN series on drone swarms

Video Overlay: What is a drone swarm

Video Overlay: How are drone swarms controlled

Video Overlay: Why do militaries want drone swarms

Video Overlay: Who is leading the development of drone swarms

Video Overlay: What are the ethical concerns with drone swarms

Video Overlay: Are drone swarms a threat to international peace and security

Video Overlay: Are drone swarm attacks now a reality

Video Overlay: Can drone swarms be banned


On Language

Gender-inclusive language

Despite some improvements over the past decades in terms of inclusiveness, representativeness and gender mainstreaming, the world of defense and security (analysis) is still male-dominated. This also counts for the language used. The RAIN+ RESEARCH GROUP intends to use gender-inclusive language in all its publications. We do that because we believe that language is an important ally when it comes to eradicating gender inequality, bias and stereotypes. We wholeheartedly support the efforts of other actors in this field to do the same. For example, NATO is increasingly using gender-inclusive language, an effort supported by its Special Representative for Women, Peace and Security. 

Although very important, we realise that consistently using gender-inclusive language throughout our work is ambitious. For example, when we are including news stories of other media in The Briefing or in our blog, The Insider, we will generally not change the original wording when we are citing from these stories. The same goes for references or citations used in our reports or primers.

Everywhere else, we use gender-inclusive language. For example, we use ‘uncrewed’ instead of ‘unmanned’; ‘aviator’ instead of ‘airman’, ‘chairperson’ or ‘chair’ instead of ‘chairman’ and ‘human-in-the-loop’ instead of ‘man-in-the-loop.’ For the moment, we keep the formulation of manned-unmanned teaming (MUM-T), as this is a standard acronym used in the sector.

Lastly, despite our rigorous efforts, we may, from time to time, simply miss an opportunity to include or improve our use of gender-inclusive language. If you have suggestions, please email us at ethics@rainresearchgroup.ai.

Need some help with terminology and acronyms?

The RAIN+ A-Z of Artificial Intelligence is here to help

Click Here

Dr. Jorrit Kamminga

Director of RAIN+ Ethics

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