AI Could Worsen Historic Gender Bias
Thu, April 22, 2021

AI Could Worsen Historic Gender Bias

Reports show that women represent only about 22% of all AI professionals across the world / Credits: Pixelbliss via Shutterstock

 

While artificial intelligence has gained success across industries, criticism about it remains. Many experts believe that AI will not only help our society but also disrupt it. But, some agree that this will all boil down to humans. After all, they are the ones feeding data to AI and machine learning systems. The potential for bias came from the underlying data, not from the mathematical model of the algorithm or the software used in AI systems.

One of the dangers of AI is worsening gender bias. Reports show that women represent only about 22% of all AI professionals across the world. Thus, the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society, a global women’s network, launched the Women and AI Daring Circle. The group is led by Microsoft in collaboration with L’Oreal, Publicis Groupe, and AXA, which aims to develop “concrete steps” to increase the participation and visibility of women in the creation of AI systems and promulgation of research and standards that are accurate, reliable, and nondiscriminatory.

According to Forbes, a global media company focusing on business, investing, technology, entrepreneurship, leadership, and lifestyle, the Circle refers to AI as one of the “most disruptive” technological developments of our age. They believe bringing more women into the industry would address several issues AI is facing. “If we can bring more women into the design and the application stages of AI, we have the chance to change rapidly biases that have been built into our society for centuries,” Julia Harrison, the Global Head of Public Affairs Practice at FTI Consulting, said. 

The Circle has already made its first move. It has called upon member organizations to make a one-year commitment to building a gender-inclusive AI ecosystem in their organization. This aims to plan the next steps that public authorities and businesses can take to adopt a “gender-lens” in the development and deployment of AI initiatives and technologies.