Kesavan Thanagopal

Ph.D. Student, Philosophy

Kesavan is currently pursuing a (second) doctoral degree in the Department of Philosophy at the University of Notre Dame where he works mainly in moral epistemology, normative ethics, and social and political philosophy, dabbling in logic, philosophy of mathematics, and (social) epistemology and (social) metaphysics from time to time. Prior to his time in ND, Kesavan had spent several years as a graduate student in the UK obtaining his MSc in Mathematical Sciences (Distinction) from the University of Durham, his MA in Philosophy, specialising in Logic and Philosophy of Mathematics (Distinction) from the University of Bristol, and his DPhil in Mathematics from the University of Oxford. Most recently, he had also completed his MA in Philosophy at Simon Fraser University in Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada.

As a Tech Ethics Graduate Fellow with the Notre Dame-IBM Technology Ethics Lab, Kesavan is looking to continue his work investigating the kind of ignorance produced by artificial intelligence, and the impact that such ignorance production has on society. In particular, he aims to explore theoretical questions such as the following: (i) whether, and under what conditions, can one consider various AI systems to be artificial moral agents; (ii) whether considering AI systems as artificial moral agents would/should help increase one's trust in them and the output that they produce; and (iii) if AI systems can be considered artificial moral agents, whether they can be held responsible (and, if so, in what sense) for the decisions that they make and the ignorance that they produce. Kesavan's ultimate goal is to provide practical solutions to these philosophical problems that policymakers can use to inform their decisions regarding AI regulation.