Interview with Gadi Perl

In a few words, can you tell us about yourself and how you found your way to the academic field?

I always enjoyed constant studying. Therefore, I knew I would find myself back in the university at one point of another. The question was always finding a topic that I would both enjoy but also feel that I can have some sort of added value. After several years in the civil service in a position that involved both a lot of computer related legal topic and also regulatory aspects - I knew that I had a lot to contribute in these issues. Nevertheless, I wanted to research something new. After several initial ideas which didn’t materialize - I found that researching questions related to regulating artificial intelligence interested me most. My experience in the techno-legal field helped me understand the ‘tech’ guys and the legal questions in this field are one of the most interesting out there.

What is the main core of your research? Can you give an example or two? How is it related to cyber security?

I mainly research questions surrounding the regulation of artificial intelligence. I’ve completed an initial research into regulating self-driving vehicles (autonomous cars) and now am looking into Judicial AI. The use of AI in real life situations creates novel questions. Some of more obvious than others. A less obvious one, but one of the most important - has to do with risk taking. How do we balance between comfortable driving and safe driving. What danger can be considered negligible and overlooked and what risks should always be considered crucial. When a machine is much better than humans in anticipating dangers - mapping what requires attention and what not is not only a practical question. This issue involves basic moral questions and re examines basic tort law issues.

Why did you choose this area over all others? Did your personal or professional background lead you to it?

I chose the regulation of artificial intelligence because, for me, it feels like the right combination of innovation, new legal issues and the kind of sci-fi technology that I remember watching when I was younger. When we were young, tv series like knight rider, showed a magical car which could drive itself. To be part of the process that allows this technology to become part of our daily life is exciting. Making sure that these cars are safe, and that the legal norms surrounding them benefit everyone and help as many as possible - seems the right thing to do.

Do you think that in this cyber age these issues are even more complex compared to other times in history? If so – in what ways?

Actually, in my opinion the technological changes of recent years are no more complex than past changes that came with the industrial revolution and similar eras. The problem is the pace in which everything is changing. Processes that used to take years, now happen within a few months. New revolutionary technologies are coming out in an amazing rate. This is the new challenge - learning how to keep pace.

After explaining the main core of your research, what do you think is the solution? What is the proper model for that? Is it applicable?

In my paper I offer a technology oriented approach for regulation of self driving vehicles. This approach, which requires us first to understand the core technologies comprising any new technological end-product - has many advantages. It allows for easier identification of legal challenges, and provides for a flexible legal construct easier to adapt with the rapidly changing technology. I think this is preferable approach not only to autonomous vehicles but also to other many new technological products.

What is the next phase in your professional life?

I am now starting to dive into the regulation of judiciary AI. In other words, I want to see how AI can help us better the legal service provided to the general public while maintaining personal freedoms. Balancing between efficiency and human rights with allow us to harness technology for a better public good. As long as someone is willing to pay me to continue doing what I like - I’m good.

What is your message to the public?

I think I would like to tell people not to be afraid of new technologies. Nowadays people fear big brother technologies, deep fake and many other doomsday scenarios related with technology. Instead of fear, I propose to embrace technology - but to do so in a conscious manner and after real and open deliberation.