Artificial Intelligence (“AI”) is a category of technology that seeks to replicate human-like decision making, make predictions, or perform other analytical tasks through software models trained on large datasets. These software models, once so trained, are able to analyze a large volume of information to make a decision or prediction much more quickly than a human could.
AI’s ability to quickly analyze large volumes of information promises great leaps in productivity and innovation and will surely revolutionize the Canadian workplace. At the same time, its emphasis on automation, appetite for data, and distance from human decision-makers enable workplace surveillance of a scope and depth that was not previously possible. These attributes of AI also raise the spectre of workers being subjected to discriminatory decision-making for which no human being can be held responsible. Further, AI creates novel issues of worker health and safety. As AI reshapes the workplace, it is vital that Canada face these risks with clear eyes and craft appropriate legislation to protect against these harms.