An Overview of Artificial Intelligence Ethics

Changwu HUANG, Zeqi ZHANG, Bifei MAO, Xin YAO

Research output: Journal PublicationsJournal Article (refereed)peer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)


Artificial intelligence (AI) has profoundly changed and will continue to change our lives. AI is being applied in more and more fields and scenarios such as autonomous driving, medical care, media, finance, industrial robots, and internet services. The widespread application of AI and its deep integration with the economy and society have improved efficiency and produced benefits. At the same time, it will inevitably impact the existing social order and raise ethical concerns. Ethical issues, such as privacy leakage, discrimination, unemployment, and security risks, brought about by AI systems have caused great trouble to people. Therefore, AI ethics, which is a field related to the study of ethical issues in AI, has become not only an important research topic in academia, but also an important topic of common concern for individuals, organizations, countries, and society. This article will give a comprehensive overview of this field by summarizing and analyzing the ethical risks and issues raised by AI, ethical guidelines and principles issued by different organizations, approaches for addressing ethical issues in AI, and methods for evaluating the ethics of AI. Additionally, challenges in implementing ethics in AI and some future perspectives are pointed out. We hope our work will provide a systematic and comprehensive overview of AI ethics for researchers and practitioners in this field, especially the beginners of this research discipline. © 2020 IEEE.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)799-819
Number of pages21
JournalIEEE Transactions on Artificial Intelligence
Issue number4
Early online date28 Jul 2022
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2023
Externally publishedYes


  • AI ethics
  • Artificial intelligence (AI)
  • ethical issue
  • ethical principle
  • ethical theory


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