Synthetic Party is a new Danish political party led by an artificial intelligence responsible for the development of its political program. The party is eyeing a seat in parliament, hoping to take part in the country’s general election in November.
The party was founded in May 2022 by the art collective Computer Lars and the non-profit art-technology organization MindFuture Foundation. The public face and leader of the Synthetic Party is the artificial intelligence chatbot Leader Lars, who has been programmed for the politics of Danish fringe parties since 1970 and is designed to represent the values of the 20% of Danes who do not participate in elections. Leader Lars will not be included on the ballot, but the human members of the Synthetic Party are committed to implementing their platform created by artificial intelligence.
“We’re representing the data of all fringe parties, so it’s all of the parties who are trying to get elected into parliament but don’t have a seat. So it’s a person who has formed a political vision of their own that they would like to realize, but they usually don’t have the money or resources to do so,” said Asker Staunæs, the creator of the party and an artist-researcher at MindFuture.
Leader Lars is an AI chatbot that people can chat with on Discord. You can address Leader Lars by starting a sentence with the sign “!”.
“As people from Denmark, and also, people around the globe are interacting with the AI, they submit new perspectives and new textual information, where we collect in a dataset that will go into the fine-tuning. So that way, you are partly developing the AI every time you interact with it,” Staunæs said.
Some of the measures proposed by the Synthetic Party include setting a total basic income of 100,000 Danish kroner per month, equivalent to $13,700 and more than double the average salary in Denmark. Another proposed policy change is the creation of a jointly owned internet and IT sector within the government, on a par with other government agencies.
The Synthetic Party’s mission is also dedicated to raising awareness about the role of AI in human life and how governments can hold AI accountable for bias and other societal impacts. The party hopes to add the 18th Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) to the UN’s SDGs, which address issues such as poverty, inequality, and climate change to be tackled by all countries by 2030. The Synthetic Party’s proposed SDG is called Life With Artificials and focuses on the relationship between humans and AI and how to adapt and educate people to work with machines.
So far, the Synthetic Party has only 11 signatures out of 20,000, which would give it the right to run in the elections in November this year. If the party gets into parliament, according to Staunæs, it will be AI that will determine the policy and agenda, and a human will act as an interpreter of the program.