Should passengers in a vehicle be sacrificed to save lives? Lives in this case include pedestrians and animals.

To answer this question, researchers from MIT conducted an analysis from over 40 million responses globally and the final answer is just interesting.

The study conducted since 2014 included an autonomous driverless vehicle that is put to a situation of dilema – to decide on who to kill and save who.

Weighing up whom a self-driving car should kill is a modern twist on an old ethical dilemma known as the trolley problem.

The modern dilemma dubbed moral machine was analysed in this form:

People were presented with several scenarios. Should a self-driving car sacrifice its passengers or swerve to hit:

  • A successful business person?
  • A known criminal?
  • A group of elderly people?
  • A herd of cows?
  • Pedestrians who were crossing the road when they were told to wait?

Four years after launching the experiment, the researchers have published an analysis of the data in Nature magazine and its interesting to see how people’s atittude vary globally.