Who is setting the right course for artificial intelligence ?: An analysis of the election programs of the parties in the German Bundestag

September 22, 2021

At the level of the European Union (EU), the topic is classified as being of similar importance. The EU is striving to use the potential of AI (European Commission, 2021) and to achieve global leadership in trustworthy AI (ibid, 4). The newly elected EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen said in 2019 when presenting her priorities and goals: "We have to make our internal market fit for the digital age, we have to make optimal use of the advantages of artificial intelligence and big data, [...] “(European Commission, 2019). The topic of AI is therefore already on the agenda of leading politicians.

Artificial intelligence not only offers economic potential (BMWi, 2019), but this technology can also offer extremely helpful applications for other areas of society and, for example, help master demographic change using assistance systems or counteract climate change using resource-saving applications and forecasting models (European Commission, 2021; Grand View Research, 2020). In the pandemic, applications of artificial intelligence were also able to show that they are capable of helping to combat the spread of the corona virus (ibid.). 
 
With the prospect of the election of a new Bundestag in September, the question arises as to how the new federal government - then without Angela Merkel - will continue to pursue the issue of AI. Against the background of the potential of AI, it seems all the more urgent that the new federal government promotes the further development of AI in Germany and sets the appropriate framework conditions so that Germany can survive in international competition. This policy paper evaluates whether the parties standing for election are aware of this topic and whether they want to take the necessary steps. For this purpose, the election programs of the parties that are currently represented by parliamentary groups in the Bundestag were examined and evaluated for the 2021 Bundestag election with regard to the topic of AI.