The Promise of AI for Humans

Snippets from an emerging AI researcher's experience at the AfricAI Conference

The rapidly advancing realm of artificial intelligence (AI) holds the promise of radically transforming our daily routines and career paths. As an emerging youngEthiopian researcher on AI and the law, I joined seven other Meta BursariesResearchers at the Artificial Intelligence for Development (AI4D) Conference to present my research on “Ethical and Human Rights Concerns on the Use ofAutomated Decision Making in Migration Management: Questioning AI Governance”;to an international audience of experts. The conference offered an excellent opportunity to showcase my research, network with other researchers, and learn about the latest advances in the field. One of the highlights was meeting and connecting with other awardees from Kenya, Nigeria, Uganda, South Africa, and Zimbabwe. We discussed our research, exchanged ideas, and learned from each other’s experiences. Seeing the diversity of studies being conducted in AI and learning about the different approaches and techniques used was truly enlightening.

The conference brought together distinguished researchers and practitioners whose insights and contributions have sparked novel ideas and innovative approaches toward AI. A wide range of informative talks, engaging workshops, and insightful panel discussions covered topics such as machine learning, natural language processing, generative AI, large language models, and robotics.

An important theme that emerged from the conference was the ethical implications of AI. Many speakers addressed the potential risks associated with AI, such as bias, privacy violations, and job displacement. They stressed the need for responsible AI development and deployment and highlighted the importance of transparency, accountability, and fairness in AI systems design.

The conference also provided a platform for me to explore potential avenues for cooperation and research. I met with researchers from different fields and discussed possible collaborations on AI-related projects. As a result, one of my key takeaways was the importance of interdisciplinary collaboration in AI research. Many speakers shared their research on cutting-edge techniques and discussed their potential applications in healthcare, finance, and transportation. There was repeated emphasis on the need for experts from different fields, such as computer science, healthcare, law, and neuroscience, to work together to advance the field of AI. Such multidisciplinary approaches can lead to more robust and accurate AI systems that address real-world problems.

These interactions were invaluable in helping me identify new research opportunities and broaden my perspective on the field. I left the conference with a renewed motivation to keep pushing the boundaries of AI research.