Administrative bodies in the European Union (EU) and its Member States increasingly rely on artificial intelligence (AI) technologies to make sense of complex scenarios. However, scholarship and practice have both shown that the adoption of AI in the public sector is accompanied by various risks, such as algorithmic discrimination or lack of oversight over decision-making. This article proposes that analyses of administrative decision-making in the age of AI must account for automated uncertainty, that is, for the uncertainty stemming from using AI in the public sector. Automated uncertainty is closely connected to the technical opacity of AI systems—but, unlike traditional forms of scientific uncertainty, it affects not only the facts but also the very decision-making structures of public administration. As a result, traditional remedies for uncertainty in administrative decision-making do not fully respond to the implications of AI-based automation for the procedural duties governing administrative decision-making. The article accordingly concludes with proposals of how administrative law scholarship can account for automated uncertainty and ensure that the use of AI does not erode the safeguards provided by the legal framework for administrative decision-making.
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