Artificial Conscious Intelligence: Why Machine Consciousness Matters to AI

James A. Reggia, Garrett E. Katz, Gregory P. Davis

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter


The fields of artificial intelligence (AI) and artificial consciousness (AC) have largely developed separately, with different goals and criteria for success and with only a minimal exchange of ideas. In this chapter, we consider the question of how concepts developed in AC research might contribute to more effective future AI systems. We first briefly discuss several past hypotheses about the function(s) of human consciousness, and present our own hypothesis that short-term working memory and very rapid learning should be a central concern in such matters. We describe our recent efforts to explore this hypothesis computationally and to identify associated computational correlates of consciousness. We then present ideas about how integrating concepts from AC into AI systems to develop an artificial conscious intelligence (ACI) could both produce more effective AI technology and contribute to a deeper scientific understanding of the fundamental nature of consciousness and intelligence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputational Approaches to Conscious Artificial Intelligence
PublisherWorld Scientific Publishing Co.
Number of pages28
ISBN (Electronic)9789811276675
ISBN (Print)9789811276668
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023


  • artificial consciousness
  • artificial intelligence
  • computational correlates of consciousness
  • computational explanatory gap
  • neural virtual machine
  • working memory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science


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