Decolonizing AI & Rethinking Resistance

Speaker: Prof. Nitin Sawhney, Aalto University

Decolonizing AI & Rethinking Resistance. Session led by Prof. Nitin Sawhney, Aalto University. Session video and PDF slides not available.

On August 7, Prof. Nitin leads a participatory discussion, building on the previous two sessions on Ethics & Politics of AI in Society and AI Ethics in Practice: Designing for Ecosystems. The final session tackles a theme that was brought up in many discussions throughout the course: Decolonizing AI & Rethinking Resistance.

The session’s objectives are the following:

1. Participatory Session for discussion and reflection of AI Ethics 

2. Applying perspectives from Decolonial Theory to AI

3. Rethinking Civic Resistance i.e. how AI can be leveraged for social justice

The discussion invites students to critically think about AI Ethics based on the key concepts and cases covered priorly. The decolonial theory will then be applied to AI, students engaging in active discussions on how AI can be impacted by it and the repercussions of this. Lastly, participants are invited to unpack and rethink civic resistance and brainstorm some modalities to use AI for good.

We suggest some readings and resources to familiarize yourself with the topic:

Catherine D’Ignazio and Lauren F. Klein. 2020. Introduction: Why Data Science Needs Feminism. In Data Feminism. MIT Press.

Shakir Mohamed, Marie-Therese Png and William Isaac. 2020. Decolonial AI: Decolonial Theory as Sociotechnical Foresight in Artificial Intelligence. Philosophy and Technology  (405). 

Nani Jansen Reventlow. 2020. Data collection is not the solution for Europe’s racism problem. Al-Jazeera.

Related Videos to Watch:

Joy Buolamwini, “AI, Ain’t I a Woman?”, Spoken word piece (2 min video) performed at Vision & Justice event at Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, April 26, 2019. Her response to algorithmic bias, or the fact that AI systems often either mischaracterize or fail to recognize dark-skinned faces. Joy Buolamwini, founder, Algorithmic Justice League, MIT Media Lab.

Catherine D’Ignazio, Feminist Data, Feminist Futures, Lecture (watch a 10 min excerpt from 14:50 onwards) at the Eyeo Festival, 2019. She examines the power in feminist imaginations and feminist futures, and the subject of her new book on Data Feminism.

Yeshimabeit Milner, Abolish Big Data, Lecture (watch a 10 min excerpt from 32:22 onwards) at the Newman Alumni Center, February 21, 2020. She is the founder of Data for Black Lives.

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