Value-Sensitive AI Applications for Digitalizing Processes in Swiss Manufacturing Companies

With both potential and risks, artificial intelligence (AI) is having an increasing impact on social and economic development. This thesis is investigating the current state of the application of AI technologies for process automation in Swiss manufacturing companies.

Stella Bongiovanni & Truc Quyen Dao, 2022

Bachelor Thesis, Institut für Wirtschaftsinformatik, Hochschule für Wirtschaft FHNW
Betreuende Dozierende: Vivienne Jia Zhong, Janine Jäger, Theresa Schmiedel
Keywords: Artificial intelligence, industry 4.0, value-sensitive design, Swiss manufacturing sector, process automation
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AI is being increasingly applied in several industries, specifically for process automation. Also the growing Swiss manufacturing industry aims at utilizing this technology to digitalize their processes within associated companies. For a successful implementation and value-adding impact, AI needs to be designed and implemented considering values and requirements of relevant stakeholders. However, stakeholder-oriented AI application design is still in its infancy.
This thesis first provides a theoretical understanding of AI technologies used to digitalize processes in Swiss manufacturing companies as well as the influence of human and social values for AI design. Second, five semi-structured interviews have been conducted with company representatives from the Swiss manufacturing sector. Those interviews have then been analyzed to understand the status quo of AI applications for process automation, potential future developments in this context and the consideration of human values with regards to AI applications in this sector.
Swiss manufacturing companies are generally very interested in the topic of AI. Those AI applications are still in their initial stages but are implemented with a strong interest to expand the businesses. Although, stakeholder values were not consciously integrated into the AI design, indirectly company values have been considered. The analysis also revealed that general benefits such as accuracy, reliability, and efficiency were mentioned most as underlying reasons for AI implementation. Companies that do not yet apply AI technologies are hesitant to integrate it due to high costs, uncertainty, and a potential lack of profitability. Nevertheless, a strong interest for integrating AI technologies in general was perceptible for all interview partners. In conclusion, AI application in the Swiss manufacturing industry is still in its early stage compared to other industries. Value-sensitive design of AI is not yet consciously taken into consideration when implementing AI for process automation, because the core focus lies on gaining business opportunities. However, general values related to AI applications were identified that can be further investigated.
Studiengang: Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Fachbereich der Arbeit:
Vertraulichkeit: vertraulich
Art der Arbeit
Bachelor Thesis
Institut für Wirtschaftsinformatik, Hochschule für Wirtschaft FHNW, Basel
Autorinnen und Autoren
Stella Bongiovanni & Truc Quyen Dao
Betreuende Dozierende
Vivienne Jia Zhong, Janine Jäger, Theresa Schmiedel
Sprache der Arbeit
Business Administration International Management (Bachelor)
Standort Studiengang
Artificial intelligence, industry 4.0, value-sensitive design, Swiss manufacturing sector, process automation