South Korea is one of the world leaders in robotics. The new ethical guidelines are seen as a natural development in a country where the government pumps millions into robotic research every year. The robotic charter comes after a recent government report forecasted that every South Korean household will have a robot by between 2015 and 2020 and that robots would routinely perform surgery by 2018.
The team of experts from Korea will have several considerations in mind when drafting the robotics ethics charter. Among other things they will have to consider ensuring continued human control over robots, preventing illegal use of robots and protecting data acquired by robots. The three robotic laws created by Asimov in his 1942 short novel "Runaround".
In other courtiers experts are also considering the ethical future of robots. In 2006 a UK government study predicted that in the next 50 years robots could demand the same rights as human beings. Another European organization interested in the future ethics of robots is the European Robotics Research Network which is also in the process of drawing up a set of guidelines on the use of robots.