AgeLab AI and Longevity Study Concludes with Comprehensive Report

by Adam Felts

In the summer of 2020, the MIT AgeLab developed a study on the impacts of artificial intelligence with support from Retirement and Personal Wealth Solutions at Bank of America. This study surveyed consumers and experts on their attitudes and beliefs about AI, with particular attention to how AI will impact domains related to longevity and aging.

In November 2020, the AgeLab hosted a two-day virtual symposium with Bank of America titled "Charting the Longevity Economy's Endless Frontier: How Artificial Intelligence Will Help Us Live Longer, Better." The event convened experts in AI to discuss the implications of the technology for older adults and the life course. Some of the participants reconvened in June 2021 for a roundtable discussion around impacts of AI applications and related services, anticipated consumer acceptance, and sociotechnical issues that need to be addressed.

The AgeLab’s AI and Longevity study culminated with a comprehensive report published in July 2021 with Bank of America that showcases results from the consumer and expert surveys.

The report breaks down consumer and expert perceptions of AI across five key domains: finance and retirement planning; health and caregiving; social interaction; infrastructure and community; and workplace, benefits, and career.

Overarching findings include a confidence gap between experts and consumers about AI's effectiveness - the experts were more likely to be confident in AI's capability to perform various tasks. This confidence gap may have implications for future adoption of certain AI applications, and may point to the need to increased education for consumers on what AI is and what it does. The study also found differences in attitudes toward AI by generation, levels of education and income, gender, and technological saaviness, suggesting potential gaps in adoption and comfort toward technology.

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About the Author

Photo of Adam Felts
Adam Felts

Adam Felts is a researcher and writer at the MIT AgeLab. Currently he is involved in research on the experiences of family caregivers and the future of financial advice. He also manages the AgeLab blog and newsletter. He received his Master's in Fine Arts in Creative Writing from Boston University in 2014 and his Master's of Theological Studies from Boston University in 2019.

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