Artificial Intelligence – A Threat to Strategic Stability?

November 6, 2019

Video Seminar: Took place on November 1, 2019, at CNS of MIIS in Monterey

Seminar with Dr. James Johnson

In this seminar, Postdoctoral Research Fellow James Johnson explores:

  • What is military artificial intelligence (AI) and how is it different from civilian AI?
  • How does popular culture depict AI and what does it get wrong?
  • The AI-cyber nexus
  • AI “hunts for nukes”
  • Drone swarming

The promises and dangers of AI, he notes, do not exist in a vacuum. Not dissimilar from other weapons systems, AI needs only to be perceived as capable to have a destabilizing impact. He also emphasized that strategic advantages of AI-infused weapons may prove irresistible to states seeking to gain the technological upper hand over its rivals.

He explores the multifaceted possible intersections of AI with nuclear weapons, and suggests that AI-enhanced conventional weapons might pose one of the greatest risks to nuclear escalation in future warfare scenarios, challenging long-held assumptions about deterrence, arms control, and crisis stability.

Download the PowerPoint presentation.

About Dr. James Johnson

Dr. Johnson holds a PhD in politics and international relations from the University of Leicester, where he is also an honorary visiting fellow with the School of History and International Relations. Dr. Johnson has published peer-review articles with journals including the Pacific Review, Asian Security, Strategic Studies Quarterly, The Washington Quarterly, Defense & Security Analysis, the Journal of Cyber Policy, and Comparative Strategy. He is the author of “The US-China Military & Defense Relationship during the Obama Presidency.” His latest book, titled Artificial Intelligence & the Future of Warfare: USA, China, and Strategic Stability, is under advanced contract with OUP/Manchester University Press. He is fluent in Mandarin.



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