To combat vaccine hesitancy and misinformation researchers of the John Hopkins University and IBM have developed an AI-based chatbot. The chatbot, named Vira, was inspired by a Japanese version that managed to increase the vaccine acceptance rate from 59% to 80%. Vira is supposed to help young people make more informed-decisions about taking or waiving a vaccination. It understands the main concerns surrounding vaccines and responds in a publicly acceptable, pro-vaccine way with answers written by experts on vaccinations. The application continually learns from new conversations, detecting emerging concerns and learning new ways in which existing ones can be expressed.
The impact of the deployment of this chatbot seems innocent at first. However, this might seem deceiving. To discover the chatbots actual impact, we have assessed its use against the 24 requirements of the “Framework for Responsible AI in times of Corona”, divided into 3 categories: (i) Society: (ii) Technology; and (iii) Governance.
Each requirement is given a score from ‘0’ to ‘3’:
0 = unknown
1 = no compliance
2 = partial compliance
3 = full compliance