Skip to main content
Past Event

Autonomous weapons and international law

The fifth annual Justice Stephen Breyer lecture

Past Event

The introduction of artificial intelligence and robotics to future scenarios of warfare is posing new challenges to national and international codes of law, ethics, and human rights. Technological advances are fast outpacing the deliberative process of public debate and law-making that should determine the rules for the design and use of such lethal technologies. Ongoing talks at the United Nations to regulate such weapons are raising a host of complex questions around who is responsible for their development and deployment on the battlefield of the future.

The fifth annual Justice Stephen Breyer lecture on international law addressed these issues from legal, ethical, and military perspectives.

This year’s keynote remarks were made by Mary Ellen O’Connell, the Robert and Marion Short professor of law at the University of Notre Dame Law School. She was joined for a panel discussion by Jeroen van den Hoven, professor of ethics and technology at Delft University of Technology in The Netherlands, and Maj. Gen. Charles J. Dunlap, USAF (Ret.), professor of the practice of law and executive director of the Center on Law, Ethics and National Security at Duke University’s School of Law. Bruce Jones, vice president and director of the Foreign Policy program at Brookings, and Mayor Pauline Krikke of The Hague made introductory remarks and Ted Piccone, senior fellow in the Foreign Policy program at Brookings, moderated the discussion.

The Justice Stephen Breyer lecture series is organized with the support of the Municipality of The Hague and the Embassy of The Netherlands in Washington.

Agenda

Introduction

Keynote remarks

Discussants

More Information

To subscribe or manage your subscriptions to our top event topic lists, please visit our event topics page.

Get a weekly events calendar from Brookings