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Leonard Dung
Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg
  1. The argument for near-term human disempowerment through AI.Leonard Dung - manuscript
    Many researchers and intellectuals warn about extreme risks from artificial intelligence. However, these warnings typically came without systematic arguments in support. This paper provides an argument that AI will lead to the permanent disempowerment of humanity, e.g. human extinction, by 2100. It rests on four substantive premises which it motivates and defends: First, the speed of advances in AI capability, as well as the capability level current systems have already reached, suggest that it is practically possible to build AI systems (...)
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  2. Preserving the Normative Significance of Sentience.Leonard Dung - 2024 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 31 (1):8-30.
    According to an orthodox view, the capacity for conscious experience (sentience) is relevant to the distribution of moral status and value. However, physicalism about consciousness might threaten the normative relevance of sentience. According to the indeterminacy argument, sentience is metaphysically indeterminate while indeterminacy of sentience is incompatible with its normative relevance. According to the introspective argument (by François Kammerer), the unreliability of our conscious introspection undercuts the justification for belief in the normative relevance of consciousness. I defend the normative relevance (...)
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  3. Assessing tests of animal consciousness.Leonard Dung - 2022 - Consciousness and Cognition 105 (C):103410.
    Which animals have conscious experiences? Many different, diverse and unrelated behaviors and cognitive capacities have been proposed as tests of the presence of consciousness in an animal. It is unclear which of these tests, if any, are valid. To remedy this problem, I develop a list consisting of eight desiderata which can be used to assess putative tests of animal consciousness. These desiderata are based either on detailed analogies between consciousness-linked human behavior and non-human behavior, on theories of consciousness or (...)
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  4. Understanding Artificial Agency.Leonard Dung - forthcoming - Philosophical Quarterly.
    Which artificial intelligence (AI) systems are agents? To answer this question, I propose a multidimensional account of agency. According to this account, a system's agency profile is jointly determined by its level of goal-directedness and autonomy as well as is abilities for directly impacting the surrounding world, long-term planning and acting for reasons. Rooted in extant theories of agency, this account enables fine-grained, nuanced comparative characterizations of artificial agency. I show that this account has multiple important virtues and is more (...)
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  5. Against the Explanatory Argument for Enactivism.Leonard Dung - 2022 - Journal of Consciousness Studies 29 (7-8):57-68.
    Sensorimotor enactivism is the view that the content and the sensory modality of perceptual experience are determined by implicit knowledge of lawful regularities between bodily movements and patterns of sensory stimulation. A proponent of the explanatory argument for sensorimotor enactivism holds that this view is able to provide an intelligible explanation for why certain material realizers give rise to certain perceptual experiences, while rival accounts cannot close this “explanatory gap”. However, I argue that the notion of the “material realizer” of (...)
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