AI and related technologies, such as machine learning and robotics, are beginning to usher in what is called the fourth industrial revolution. The term “artificial intelligence” was coined by John McCarthy in 1956 at the Dartmouth Conference. With several breakthroughs like self-driving cars and reliable image recognition, we have seen massive innovation in this field since then.
AI is shaping how we view our world and make decisions, which is why it is essential to acknowledge the role of women in shaping that view. There is a considerable gender gap in the tech industry, yet many women are making a significant change in artificial intelligence and machine learning research. According to the world economic forum, women only account for 22% of AI experts worldwide.
It is simply that more diverse minds behind AI will lead to more well-rounded technological development. Even though it is essential to acknowledge the gender gap, it is important to celebrate the many scientists and researchers making great strides in machine learning and AI. Many brilliant women are today at the forefront of AI as entrepreneurs, academic researchers, industry executives, etc. They also serve as AI leaders for the next generation showcasing what an inclusive AI community should look like.
Featured below are five of the leading women in artificial technology today.
Fei-Fei Li – Professor of Computer Science, Stanford University
She is a renowned academic who is currently the chief scientist of artificial intelligence and machine learning at Google Cloud. Her work in creating intelligent algorithms that empower computers and robots to see and think like a human mind would is pioneering. She also founded AI4All, a non-profit dedicated to diversifying the AI field.
Joy Buolamwini – Founder of Algorithmic Justice League
She has been described as “the conscience of A.I. revolution.” Her pioneering work on the algorithmic bias as a graduate student at MIT opened the world’s eyes to the racial and gender prejudices embedded in facial recognition systems. Buolamwini is at the forefront of a significant movement that identifies and addresses AI systems’ bias.
Lili Cheng – Corporate VP of Microsoft AI
Within Microsoft, Lili founded the Social Computing Group in Microsoft Research & Future Social Experience (FUSE) Labs, which has been crucial in developing real-time data and search functions. She has also worked for Apple Computer’s Advanced Technology Group and its UI (User Interface) research team in the past.
Caitlin Smallwood – VP, Data Science & Engineering, Search & Assistant at Google
She is one of the main figures in the data science network. Caitlin was earlier working at Netflix, where she leveraged her expertise in AI-enabled analytics and recommendation systems for various application use, including consumer research, data engineering, personalising recommendations etc.
Peggy Tsai – Chief data officer at BigID
Peggy is the co-founder of The AI Book and a tech start-up advisor who also ranked as one of the Top 50 Women in Tech for the years 2020 & 2021. She focuses on elevating data governance programs with new innovative technology, especially machine learning and artificial intelligence.
Women role models are critical in breaking down gender stereotypes, and something as impactful and potentially far-reaching as AI can only benefit from various viewpoints. This is why it is becoming essential to encourage young girls to pursue STEM careers this International Women’s Day.