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We really do not know what will happen to politics and democracy when the technological environment drastically changes and what political shifts we'll link with robotisation, digitalisation, and automation. This ignorance explains why two conflicting diagnoses imply a farewell to politics: the prophets of enthusiasm herald the absolute power of technology over politics, which they consider a good thing. Some say it might replace weakened or missing governmental systems. New technology would fix problems old politics couldn’t. The opposing diagnosis of the end of politics blames technology for the loss of the ability to manage social processes and the de-democratization of political decisions. Both technophilia and technophobia stem from ignorance and the belief that technology can replace politics. It’s only a matter of perspective.

The Chair AI&DEM was created precisely to think as rigorously as possible about the impact of these technologies on democratic politics. Rather than normative, the challenge we face is conceptual. Automation requires thinking about many sociocultural categories, such as subject, action, responsibility, knowledge, or work. The three elements that will change politics in this century are increasingly intelligent systems, more integrated technology, and a more quantified society. What we are asking ourselves is what is meant by democratic self-government and what is the meaning of free political decisions in this new constellation. Our goal is to develop a theory of democratic decision in an AI-mediated environment and to elaborate a critical theory of automatic reason. We need a political philosophy of artificial intelligence, an approach that can be covered neither by technological reflection nor by ethical codes. The fundamental question is the place of political decisions in an algorithmic democracy.


  • High-Level Policy Dialogue on “The Democratic Challenges of Artificial Intelligence”
  • Research and publications
  • Events and external engagement
  • Executive education and trainings
  • Iberoamerican Network for Democracy and Artificial Intelligence (REDemocracIA)




This programme is funded by the Spanish Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation and the European Union’s NextGenerationEU.

The Chair


Advisory board

  • Portrait picture of Amparo Alonso Betanzos

    Amparo Alonso Betanzos

    CITIC-University of A Coruña (UDC)

  • Portrait picture of Sofia Näsström

    Sofia Näsström

    Department of Government, Uppsala University, Sweden

  • Portrait picture of Helen Margetts

    Helen Margetts

    Mansfield College

  • Portrait picture of Piergiorgio Donatelli

    Piergiorgio Donatelli

    Sapienza Università di Roma

  • Portrait picture of Stephan Lessenich

    Stephan Lessenich

    Institute for Social Research (IfS)

Page last updated on 05/07/2023

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