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Second AI-Powered Candidate Seeks Office in Japan Second AI-Powered Candidate Seeks Office in Japan
AI seems to be spreading not just across industries, but also in public office. Or at least it’s attempting to. In... Second AI-Powered Candidate Seeks Office in Japan

AI seems to be spreading not just across industries, but also in public office. Or at least it’s attempting to. In the Japanese town of Manazuru, a mayoral candidate called AI メイヤー hopes to be the first AI-powered office holder in Japan.

But AI Mayor isn’t the first AI program that ran for office. According to Kanda University of International Studies Special Lecturer Jeffrey J. Hall’s X (formerly known as Twitter) account, back in April another AI candidate by the name of A.I. Joe for office in hopes of representing the citizens of Tokyo’s Minato ward.

Though A.I. Joe failed to win to even break the top ten in the race (finishing in 34th place with only 512 votes) AI Mayor is the second attempt at bringing AI decision-making into public office. According to Hall, the AI is pledging to make major decisions that will eliminate “human bias” from the town’s politics.

But what are the AI Mayor’s chances? The first AI attempted to gain traction in a race that had dozens of other candidates. In the case of AI Mayor, the race is between a total of five candidates. This more intimate setting might be a double-edged sword for the AI candidate.

That’s because, as Mr. Hall points out, the local setting in terms of elections is quite dependent on social ties. Though not seen as powerfully here in the United States, in the case of Japan, those ties are quite important and often can predetermine a race’s outcome.

With that said though, the town where this race is happening is divided according to Hall’s reporting. Due to accusations of abusing public information to win an election, the town’s mayor, Matsumoto Kazuhiko was recalled.

This has divided the town into two factions with the AI Mayor promising to be the “fair” alternative for the people tired of the two major factions fighting. Now if AI Mayor were to win, it would likely be the very first AI program to take office.

Though it promises to be accessible to the people through a chat feature on its official website, it’s unknown if that will be enough to help the AI win on election day. But if it does, one has to ask if humans across the globe are ready to vote in AI for office.

ODSC Team

ODSC Team

ODSC gathers the attendees, presenters, and companies that are shaping the present and future of data science and AI. ODSC hosts one of the largest gatherings of professional data scientists with major conferences in USA, Europe, and Asia.

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