Iyad Rahwan

Iyad Rahwan
Max Planck Institute for Human Development | MPIB · Center for Humans & Machines

PhD

About

223
Publications
152,081
Reads
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9,545
Citations
Citations since 2016
105 Research Items
6839 Citations
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Additional affiliations
December 2018 - present
Max Planck Institute for Human Development
Position
  • Managing Director
September 2015 - June 2020
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
January 2012 - August 2015
Khalifa University
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
Education
January 2001 - December 2005
University of Melbourne
Field of study
  • Information Systems
July 1999 - July 2001
Swinburne University of Technology
Field of study
  • Information Technology
September 1995 - June 1999
United Arab Emirates University
Field of study
  • Computer Science

Publications

Publications (223)
Article
Full-text available
Codes of conduct in autonomous vehicles When it becomes possible to program decision-making based on moral principles into machines, will self-interest or the public good predominate? In a series of surveys, Bonnefon et al. found that even though participants approve of autonomous vehicles that might sacrifice passengers to save others, respondents...
Article
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The World Wide Web is commonly seen as a platform that can harness the collective abilities of large numbers of people to accomplish tasks with unprecedented speed, accuracy, and scale. To explore the Web’s ability for social mobilization, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) held the DARPA Network Challenge, in which competing tea...
Article
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Social mobilization, the ability to mobilize large numbers of people via social networks to achieve highly distributed tasks, has received significant attention in recent times. This growing capability, facilitated by modern communication technology, is highly relevant to endeavors which require the search for individuals that possess rare informat...
Article
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Social learning-by observing and copying others-is a highly successful cultural mechanism for adaptation, outperforming individual information acquisition and experience. Here, we investigate social learning in the context of the uniquely human capacity for reflective, analytical reasoning. A hallmark of the human mind is its ability to engage anal...
Article
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The Internet and social media have enabled the mobilization of large crowds to achieve time-critical feats, ranging from mapping crises in real time, to organizing mass rallies, to conducting search-and-rescue operations over large geographies. Despite significant success, selection bias may lead to inflated expectations of the efficacy of social m...
Article
Humans are impressive social learners. Researchers of cultural evolution have studied the many biases shaping cultural transmission by selecting who we copy from and what we copy. One hypothesis is that with the advent of superhuman algorithms a hybrid type of cultural transmission, namely from algorithms to humans, may have long-lasting effects on...
Article
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Objective. When medical resources are scarce, clinicians must make difficult triage decisions. When these decisions affect public trust and morale, as was the case during the COVID-19 pandemic, experts will benefit from knowing which triage metrics have citizen support. Design. We conducted an online survey in 20 countries, comparing support for 5...
Article
Corruption presents one of the biggest challenges of our time, and much hope is placed in artificial intelligence (AI) to combat it. Although the growing number of AI-based anti-corruption tools (AI-ACT) have been summarized, a critical examination of their promises and perils is lacking. Here we argue that the success of AI-ACT strongly depends on...
Article
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When facing automation threats, a large Chinese city worker might not be as lucky as a worker in a large US city. Empirical studies found that large US cities exhibit resilience to automation impacts because of the increased occupational and skill specialization. However, in this study, we observe polarized responses in large Chinese cities to auto...
Article
Full-text available
Culture has played a pivotal role in human evolution. Yet, the ability of social scientists to study culture is limited by the currently available measurement instruments. Scholars of culture must regularly choose between scalable but sparse survey-based methods or restricted but rich ethnographic methods. Here, we demonstrate that massive online s...
Preprint
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In this paper we conduct a longitudinal analysis of the structure of labour markets in the US over 7 decades of technological, economic and policy change. We make use of network science, natural language processing and machine learning to uncover structural changes in the labour market over time. We find a steady rate of both disappearance of jobs...
Preprint
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One of the most remarkable things about the human moral mind is its flexibility. We can make moral judgments about cases we have never seen before. We can decide that pre-established rules should be broken. We can invent novel rules on the fly. Capturing this flexibility is one of the central challenges in developing AI systems that can interpret a...
Chapter
Machines powered by artificial intelligence increasingly mediate our social, cultural, economic, and political interactions. This chapter frames and surveys the emerging interdisciplinary field of machine behaviour: the scientific study of behaviour exhibited by intelligent machines. It outlines the key research themes, questions, and landmark rese...
Article
Technologies for manipulating and faking online media may outpace people's ability to tell the difference.
Article
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Deception plays a critical role in the dissemination of information, and has important consequences on the functioning of cultural, market-based and democratic institutions. Deception has been widely studied within the fields of philosophy, psychology, economics and political science. Yet, we still lack an understanding of how deception emerges in...
Article
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China, the world’s second largest economy, is transitioning into an advanced, knowledge-based economy after four decades of rapid economic development. However, China still lacks a detailed understanding of the skills that underly the Chinese labor force, and the development and spatial distribution of these skills. Similar data has proven essentia...
Article
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As machines powered by artificial intelligence (AI) influence humans’ behaviour in ways that are both like and unlike the ways humans influence each other, worry emerges about the corrupting power of AI agents. To estimate the empirical validity of these fears, we review the available evidence from behavioural science, human–computer interaction an...
Article
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Many modern interactions happen in a digital space, where automated recommendations and homophily can shape the composition of groups interacting together and the knowledge that groups are able to tap into when operating online. Digital interactions are also characterized by different scales, from small interest groups to large online communities....
Article
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Multiple driving forces shape cities. These forces include the costs of transporting goods and people, the types of predominant local industries, and the policies that govern urban planning. Here, we examine how agglomeration and dispersion change with increasing population and population density. We study the patterns in the evolution of urban for...
Preprint
Humans are impressive social learners. Researchers of cultural evolution have studied the many biases that enable solutions and behaviours to spread socially from one human to the next, selecting from whom we copy and what we copy. In a digital society, algorithmic and human agents both contribute to transmission of knowledge. One hypothesis is tha...
Article
Full-text available
Cities are the innovation centers of the US economy, but technological disruptions can exclude workers and inhibit a middle class. Therefore, urban policy must promote the jobs and skills that increase worker pay, create employment, and foster economic resilience. In this paper, we model labor market resilience with an ecologically-inspired job net...
Article
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Autonomous Vehicles (AVs) promise of a multi-trillion-dollar industry that revolutionizes transportation safety and convenience depends as much on overcoming the psychological barriers to their widespread use as the technological and legal challenges. The first AV-related traffic fatalities have pushed manufacturers and regulators towards decisions...
Preprint
Full-text available
Corruption continues to be one of the biggest societal challenges of our time. New hope is placed in Artificial Intelligence (AI) to serve as an unbiased anti-corruption agent. Ever more available (open) government data paired with unprecedented performance of such algorithms render AI the next frontier in anti-corruption. Summarizing existing effo...
Article
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An amendment to this paper has been published and can be accessed via a link at the top of the paper.
Article
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As groups are increasingly taking over individual experts in many tasks, it is ever more important to understand the determinants of group success. In this paper, we study the patterns of group success in Escape The Room, a physical adventure game in which a group is tasked with escaping a maze by collectively solving a series of puzzles. We invest...
Article
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Machines do not ‘think fast and slow’ in the sense that humans do in dual-process models of cognition. However, the people who create the machines may attempt to emulate or simulate these fast and slow modes of thinking, which will in turn affect the way end users relate to these machines. In this opinion article we consider the complex interplay i...
Chapter
This chapter discusses the limits of normative ethics in new moral domains linked to the development of AI. In these new domains, people have the possibility to opt out of using a machine if they do not approve of the ethics that the machine is programmed to follow. In other words, even if normative ethics could determine the best moral programs, t...
Preprint
Full-text available
Culture has played a pivotal role in human evolution. Yet, the ability of social scientists to study culture is limited by currently available measurement instruments. Scholars of culture must regularly choose between scalable but sparse survey-based methods or restricted but rich ethnographic methods. Here, we demonstrate that massive online socia...
Preprint
Ten years ago, DARPA launched the 'Network Challenge', more commonly known as the 'DARPA Red Balloon Challenge'. Ten red weather balloons were fixed at unknown locations in the US. An open challenge was launched to locate all ten, the first to do so would be declared the winner receiving a cash prize. A team from MIT Media Lab was able to locate th...
Article
We present BeeMe, an online platform designed for Internet collective action and problem solving. As a test case, we analyze data from a global performance where thousands of individuals collectively solved a mystery online. We discuss our results in light of contemporary debates on hybrid systems.
Article
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Is there a universal economic pathway individual cities recapitulate over and over? This evolutionary structure—if any—would inform a reference model for fairer assessment, better maintenance, and improved forecasting of urban development. Using employment data including more than 100 million U.S. workers in all industries between 1998 and 2013, we...
Article
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The recent sale of an AI-generated portrait for $432,000 at Christie’s art auction has raised questions about how credit and responsibility should be allocated to individuals involved, and how the anthropomorphic perception of the AI system contributed to the artwork’s success. Here, we identify natural heterogeneity in the extent to which differen...
Preprint
In a complex digital space---where information is shared without vetting from central authorities and where emotional content, rather than factual veracity, better predicts content spread---individuals often need to learn through experience which news sources to trust and rely on. Although public and experts' intuition alike call for stronger scrut...
Preprint
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We propose a new discrimination-aware learning method to improve both accuracy and fairness of face recognition algorithms. The most popular face recognition benchmarks assume a distribution of subjects without paying much attention to their demographic attributes. In this work, we perform a comprehensive discrimination-aware experimentation of dee...
Article
A platform for creating a crowdsourced picture of human opinions on how machines should handle moral dilemmas.
Preprint
We present an online platform, called BeeMe, designed to test the current boundaries of Internet collective action and problem solving. BeeMe allows a scalable internet crowd of online users to collectively control the actions of a human surrogate acting in physical space. BeeMe demonstrates how intelligent goal-oriented decision-making can emerge...
Article
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When an automated car harms someone, who is blamed by those who hear about it? Here we asked human participants to consider hypothetical cases in which a pedestrian was killed by a car operated under shared control of a primary and a secondary driver and to indicate how blame should be allocated. We find that when only one driver makes an error, th...
Preprint
China is the world's second largest economy. After four decades of economic miracles, China's economy is transitioning into an advanced, knowledge-based economy. Yet, we still lack a detailed understanding of the skills that underly the Chinese labor force, and the development and spatial distribution of these skills. For example, the US standardiz...
Preprint
Diverse groups are often said to be less susceptible to decision errors resulting from herding and polarization. Thus, the fact that many modern interactions happen in a digital world, where filter bubbles and homophily bring people together, is an alarming yet poorly understood phenomenon. But online interactions are also characterized by unpreced...
Article
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When do people find it acceptable to sacrifice one life to save many? Cross-cultural studies suggested a complex pattern of universals and variations in the way people approach this question, but data were often based on small samples from a small number of countries outside of the Western world. Here we analyze responses to three sacrificial dilem...
Preprint
Full-text available
The most popular face recognition benchmarks assume a distribution of subjects without much attention to their demographic attributes. In this work, we perform a comprehensive discrimination-aware experimentation of deep learning-based face recognition. The main aim of this study is focused on a better understanding of the feature space generated b...
Article
Full-text available
Recent advances in artificial intelligence and deep learning have made it possible for bots to pass as humans, as is the case with the recent Google Duplex—an automated voice assistant capable of generating realistic speech that can fool humans into thinking they are talking to another human. Such technologies have drawn sharp criticism due to thei...
Article
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The algorithms that control AVs will need to embed moral principles guiding their decisions in situations of unavoidable harm. Manufacturers and regulators are confronted with three potentially incompatible objectives: being consistent, not causing public outrage, and not discouraging buyers. The presented moral machine study is a step towards solv...
Article
Human behaviours alter-and are altered by-climate. Might the impacts of warming on human behaviours amplify anthropogenic contributions to climate change? Here, we show that warmer temperatures substantially increase transportation use in the USA. To do so, we combine meteorological data with data on vehicle miles travelled (VMT) and public transit...
Preprint
Full-text available
When facing threats from automation, a worker residing in a large Chinese city might not be as lucky as a worker in a large U.S. city, depending on the type of large city in which one resides. Empirical studies found that large U.S. cities exhibit resilience to automation impacts because of the increased occupational and skill specialization. Howev...
Preprint
Recent advances in neural networks for content generation enable artificial intelligence (AI) models to generate high-quality media manipulations. Here we report on a randomized experiment designed to study the effect of exposure to media manipulations on over 15,000 individuals' ability to discern machine-manipulated media. We engineer a neural ne...
Article
Full-text available
To what extent can online social networks predict who is at risk of an infection? Many infections are transmitted through physical encounter between humans, but collecting detailed information about it can be expensive, might invade privacy, or might not even be possible. In this paper, we ask whether online social networks help predict and contain...
Preprint
Research in the area of style transfer for text is currently bottlenecked by a lack of standard evaluation practices. This paper aims to alleviate this issue by experimentally identifying best practices with a Yelp sentiment dataset. We specify three aspects of interest (style transfer intensity, content preservation, and naturalness) and show how...
Article
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Rapid advances in artificial intelligence (AI) and automation technologies have the potential to significantly disrupt labor markets. While AI and automation can augment the productivity of some workers, they can replace the work done by others and will likely transform almost all occupations at least to some degree. Rising automation is happening...
Article
Full-text available
Machines powered by artificial intelligence increasingly mediate our social, cultural, economic and political interactions. Understanding the behaviour of artificial intelligence systems is essential to our ability to control their actions, reap their benefits and minimize their harms. Here we argue that this necessitates a broad scientific researc...
Article
Full-text available
Everyone agrees that autonomous cars ought to save lives. Even if the cars do not live up to the most optimistic estimates of eliminating 90% of traffic fatalities [1] , eliminating at least some traffic fatalities is one of the key promises of automated driving. Indeed, the first two principles of the German Ethics Code for Automated and Conn...
Preprint
The "small world phenomenon," popularized by Stanley Milgram, suggests that individuals from across a social network are connected via a short path of mutual friends and can leverage their local social information to efficiently traverse that network. Existing social search experiments are plagued by high rates of attrition, which prohibit comprehe...
Article
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A bibliometric analysis of the past and present of AI research suggests a consolidation of research influence. This may present challenges for the exchange of ideas between AI and the social sciences.
Preprint
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Algorithmic-matching sites offer users access to an unprecedented number of potential mates. However, they also pose a principal-agent problem with a potential moral hazard. The agent's interest is to maximize usage of the Web site, while the principal's interest is to find the best possible romantic partners. This creates a conflict of interest: o...