Artificial Intelligence and Democracy
How are AI based intervnetions recasting democracy in India?
Increasingly, applications of big data and machine learning are being used to manipulate public opinion, spread and amplify hate speech, and increase the surveillance capacities of states across the world. What is the impact of AI on democracy in India? This paper aims to map and identify some of the key issues of concern around AI and democracy.
What stands out within the Indian context is the rapid increase in mobile and internet connectivity over the past five years, leading to a vast increase in internet users in India from 65 million in 2014 to 580 million in 2019. Targeted political messaging as well as false political content is delivered to people and groups who have been segregated on the basis of demographic data, such as age, religion, caste, occupation, and party affiliation. The circulation of political communication and content is further amplified by the contextual hybridity of the media environment in India, which enables the permeation of online messaging into the offline world as well.
In particular, the paper explores three specific dimensions of state-society relations that are being transformed by AI applications -
- strategies for political mobilisation,
- delivery of public services, and
- possibilities for citizen participation.
The impact of AI as a socio-technical system, therefore must take into account the structures and contexts in which they are embedded and what those might mean for democratic values and citizen participation