Positive Artificial Intelligence has been introduced recently as a field of intellectual and technological inquiry. Indeed, the term was first featured at the Artificial Intelligence for the Ageing Society, which occurred as part of the 19th International Conference of the Italian Association for Artificial Intelligence (Nov 2020), as an offspring of Positive Psychology.
Positive Psychology is a relatively recent branch of Psychology, with its birth acknowledged to have occurred in 1998, having Prof. Martin E. P. Seligman as its father. Very briefly, it complements traditional Psychology by focusing on the promotion and enhancement of positive aspects of human personality which ultimately lead to happiness. Positive Artificial Intelligence addresses the development of intelligent systems and agents to support individuals and institutions on their path towards happiness.
As a concrete example of Positive Artificial Intelligence, we can consider a mobile intelligent assistant to guide elderly pedestrians in urban settings. Traditional Artificial Intelligence would most likely focus on avoiding accidents and discomfort while minimising walking distance and time, whereas Positive Artificial Intelligence could also consider beauty of landscape and interesting detours that can make the route towards a specified destination more pleasant, meaningful, and socially engaging.
Positively Intelligent Agents take into account personalised user tastes and traits to make decisions, which relate directly with sensitive and intimate aspects of personality and emotional states. For this reason, ethical considerations regarding transparency are of utmost importance in the design of such systems, as requirements for trust are particularly stringent in this case.