Skip to main content

Deciding on appropriate use of force: human-machine interaction in weapons systems and emerging norms

Huelss, Hendrik (2019) Deciding on appropriate use of force: human-machine interaction in weapons systems and emerging norms. Global Policy, . ISSN 1758-5880. (doi:10.1111/1758-5899.12692) (KAR id:73849)

PDF Publisher pdf
Language: English
Download (322kB) Preview
[thumbnail of Global Policy 2019.pdf]
This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology.
Request an accessible format
Official URL


This article considers the role of norms in the debate on autonomous weapons systems (AWS). It argues that the academic and political discussion is largely dominated by considerations of how AWS relate to norms institutionalised in international law. While this debate on AWS has produced insights on legal and ethical norms and sounded options of a possible regulation or ban, it neglects to investigate how complex human-machine interactions in weapons systems can set standards of appropriate use of force, which are politically-normatively relevant but take place outside of formal, deliberative law-setting. While such procedural norms are already emerging in the practice of contemporary warfare, the increasing technological complexity of AI-driven weapons will add to their political-normative relevance. I argue that public deliberation about and political oversight and accountability of the use of force is at risk of being consumed and normalised by functional procedures and perceptions. This can have a profound impact on future of remote-warfare and security policy.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1111/1758-5899.12692
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Human and Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Hendrik Huelss
Date Deposited: 10 May 2019 11:00 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 14:04 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
Huelss, Hendrik:
  • Depositors only (login required):


Downloads per month over past year