On Law, Philosophy and Technology

  • Ugo Pagallo
Part of the Law, Governance and Technology Series book series (LGTS, volume 10)


What a new generation of issues concerning robotic crimes, contracts, and torts have in common is the legal quest to define who is responsible for a robotic act or omission: when something goes wrong, “Who Pays?” Lawyers accordingly determine different levels of responsibility and agency in the field of legal robotics, by ascertaining whether such autonomous and even “intelligent” machines should be reckoned as legal persons, proper agents, or mere sources of legal responsibility in the system. Three different scenarios for a hard case in positive law concern the personhood of robots, their accountability in contracts, and new types of human responsibility for the behaviour of others. However, “Who pays?” often means different things in such fields as criminal law, contracts, and torts, e.g., the level of robotic autonomy that at times is sufficient to produce relevant effects in the field of contractual obligations, arguably is insufficient to bring robots before judges and have them declared guilty in criminal courts.


Artificial Agent Legal Personhood Legal Reasoning Legal Responsibility Strict Liability 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ugo Pagallo
    • 1
  1. 1.Torino Law SchoolUniversity of TorinoTorinoItaly

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