News The Responsible AI Forum 2020 Preview

The Responsible AI Forum (TRAIF) Preview was a sneak-peek into how the IEAI and its partners, Global AI Ethics Consortium and Responsible AI Network Africa (RAIN-Africa), are promoting a sustainable, inclusive and comprehensive framework for the use of AI that delivers global benefit. The event was held on 12 and 13 November in five sessions and with more than 20 experts from around the globe who met virtually and shared their views, thoughts and research findings with an international audience. RAIN-Africa had an opportunity to showcase its work this year specifically in the last session of the first day, with a panel on opportunities and ethical challenges for Responsible AI in Africa. The topic was discussed with researchers, public servants and industrial players from across Africa. The session was opened by Dr. Caitlin Corrigan (TUM IEAI) and moderated by Prof Jerry John Kponyo (KNUST).

During the panel discussion, Paa kwasi Gadabui from MTN cautioned against the speedy adoption of AI that could harm vulnerable population in Africa. He suggested that Africa should adopt modes of engagement that includes these populations, suits the local context/culture, policies and regulations to ensure these applications are ethical and inclusive.  The second Speaker Teki Akuetteh Falconer discussed how society build systems that enables its environment to improve and how Africa can learn from the mistakes of other regions in technology adoption. She also highlighted the issue of access and inclusion to avoid the exclusion of the marginalized masses when using AI to make decisions. Abraham Kuku Sam discussed the GIZ FairForward project‘s response to some of the challenges AI experts face when using AI to address Africa’s socio-economic problem. He stressed on technical know-how, access to data and policy framework as major challenges and then talked about how FairFoward activities are working on developing e-learning platforms, building alliance for open data technologies and developing national AI policy framework with the UN Global Pulse to address these challenges. Prof Kwame Osei Boateng also stressed on the issue of data availability and deficit in AI expertise in Africa. He also mentioned the opportunities for African countries to use AI to fight corruption and develop programmes that will attract AI researchers to pursue careers in Africa.

These presentations were followed by an open discussion session, in which issues like data privacy, access, institutional capacity, infrastructure and skills were raised and discussed.

You can watch the entire event of RAIN-Africa TRAIF Preview session here