Research Group on Issues of Autonomy and AI for Defense Systems

About the Activity

Limited levels of autonomy have existed in weapons systems for decades. However, recent computational advances, especially in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), have changed the scope of what a weapons system can accomplish autonomously. Capabilities today extend beyond such competencies as navigation and radar detection to include facial recognition software, swarming technology, extensive data analysis, and much more. Further, autonomous weapons systems (AWS) are increasingly allocated tasks that were previously reserved only for humans.

A group of experts, the Research Group on Issues of Autonomy and AI in Defense Systems (the Research Group), has been convened by IEEE SA. Their role is to discuss and document challenges as an initial step to help bridge the gap between general principles and practical insights in this sensitive and vital domain. The focus of this group is to create a knowledge base of best practices regarding the development, use, and governance of autonomous weapons systems. These practices are initially based on the guidelines first established by AWS-related principles and later updated to reflect evolving technological advancements and international norms and regulations.

Goals of the Activity

Proposed deliverables and outcomes from this Industry Connections activity may include documents (e.g., white papers, reports), proposals for standards, conferences, and workshops, etc. The deliverables of this activity will be:

  • Webinars
  • Videos
  • Whitepapers and other marketing/communications materials
  • Solutions to or best practices for addressing various challenges

Getting Involved

Who Should Get Involved

We welcome new participants from large and small corporations, academia, industry, and government agencies that are interested in the Research Group on Issues of Autonomy and AI for Defense Systems. Members will be representatives of organizations that include but are not limited to:

  • United Nations Convention on Certain Conventional Weapons
  • NATO
  • Military
  • Other think tanks
  • Businesses involved in discussions on autonomous weapons systems

How to Get Involved

To learn more about the program and how to join the Research group on issues of Autonomy and AI for Defense Systems activity, please express your interest by sending an inquiry to the activity chair whose information can be found in the Contacts section.

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