Artificial Intelligence (AI) shows great potential to tackle environmental sustainability issues that are critical to the survival of Humanity and Planet Earth. However, the development and use of AI causes indirect emissions leading to detrimental effects on the environment. Therefore, it is important for organizations, researchers, and practitioners in the Information Systems (IS) domain to understand both the positive and negative effects of AI on the environment. This article contributes to this topic by performing a theoretical review of the literature at the intersection of AI and Sustainability to determine the current research streams. Further, this article adopts the affordance theory as a theoretical lens with the goal to identify the affordances of Sustainable AI – a field that encompasses the research areas ‘AI for Sustainability as well as ‘Sustainability of AI’ – in the Green IS community. The identified affordances would enable researchers and practitioners to design and use Sustainable AI systems.
Harish Karthi Natarajan, Danielly de Paula, Christian Dremel, Falk Uebernickel