Breaking Bias

creating fair equitable AI

We all know, humans are all inherently flawed. Our flaws shape our decisions, experiences and our points of view.

In the tech-driven world, we reveal our bias in the data footprint we leave behind, the echo of our actions, decisions and preferences. When we allow bias to guide our decisions and actions promoting one candidate over the other, the result is invariably the perpetuation of inequality for the person(s) affected.

However, When the data from thousands of such decisions is used to train an AI through the Machine Learning (ML) process, the resulting AI can inherit those biases. Without mitigation of the embedded bias. The outcome is the repeating of our prejudiced decision making, the scaling of our flaws and the amplification of our negative traits on scales uninhibited by our physical limitations. Meaning that if such an AI was implemented to perform HR duties, hiring, promoting ect. Systems trained on previous biased decisions and implemented without addressing biases would continue gender, racial and ableist bias. Perpetuating inequality by skewing the unbalanced inequitable job market.

Breaking Bias

Out of the many ways bias can affect AI, the use of biased training data is one of the most harmful. However, during the Machine Learning process upon which AI is built, there are many techniques that developers can use to engineer bias out, or a balancing or weighting of the dataset however, to do so, one often must first acknowledge the sources bias, both, in the data as well as conscious and unconscious bias within themselves.

For obvious reasons unconscious bias is significantly more difficult to address, for this we need an external perspective. Addressing this requires a diverse team to be able to always check each other’s unconscious biases. Therefore, including diverse decision-making teams in AI development is so critical to the fight for gender equity. This is why AI developers like us at INEVITABLE actively seek out as diverse a team as possible. Afterall alloys and composites are stronger.

What can be done?

As humans we need to accept that we all have unconscious bias and that we need to actively facilitate diverse points of view so that we can begin to engineer bias out. Before we make decisions its important to take a step back and question what affect conscious and unconscious bias may have had and explore how we can address the issues that arise.

As we stand up to inequality, as we speak up with those who are talked over, actively fighting for equity. We must also fight the unconscious bias’ within our own minds as we fight for the rights of others who do not share our characteristics; humanity is not the thoughts in our heads but the sum of our actions.

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