25: Issues in robot law and policy
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This chapter surveys major issues in robot-related law and policy including: whether robots have, or should have, legal rights and how generally to apportion liability for various types of robot-related injuries including notably injuries arising from emergent (unexpected) behavior. It gives an outline of the fraught and uncertain questions relating to injury liability for self-driving cars as well as the regulatory landscape for UAVs (drones), and difficulties relating to adoption of so-called robocops. It identifies transnational regulatory issues for seagoing robotic watercraft; it also outlines key debates about battlefield robots (lethal autonomous weapons systems), relating to both the international laws of war and concepts of command responsibility. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the economic consequences of robots for employment, and possible policy responses. A brief conclusion suggests that critical and difficult robot law and policy issues are upon us, and that legislators, regulatory authorities, judges, standards-makers, and academics will all be called on to address them.

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