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A Future of Work for the Invisible Workers in A.I – Saiph Savage
December 10, 2020 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm EST
When: Thursday, December 10, 8 AM PST (11 AM EST, 17:00 Central European time)
Where: Zoom Meeting Password: 081065
Speaker: Saiph Savage
Abstract: The A.I. industry has created new jobs that have been essential to the real-world deployment of intelligent systems. These new jobs typically focus on labeling data for machine learning models or having workers complete tasks that A.I. alone cannot do. Human labor with A.I. has powered a futuristic reality where self-driving cars and voice assistants are now commonplace. However, the workers powering our A.I. industry are often invisible to consumers. Together, this has facilitated a reality where these invisible workers are often paid below minimum wage and have limited career growth opportunities. In this talk, I will present how we can design a future of work for empowering the invisible workers behind our A.I. I propose a framework that transforms invisible A.I. labor into opportunities for skill growth, hourly wage increase, and facilitates transitioning to new creative jobs that are unlikely to be automated in the future. Taking inspiration from social theories on solidarity and collective action, my framework introduces two new techniques for creating career ladders within invisible A.I. labor: a) Solidarity Blockers, computational methods that use solidarity to collectively organize workers to help each other to build new skills while completing invisible labor; and b) Entrepreneur Blocks, computational techniques that, inspired from collective action theory, guide invisible workers to create new creative solutions and startups in their communities. I will present case-studies showcasing how this framework can drive positive social change for the invisible workers in our A.I. industry. I will also connect how governments and civic organizations in Latin America and U.S. rural states can use the proposed framework to provide new and fair job opportunities. In contrast to prior research that focused primarily on improving A.I., this talk will empower you to create a future that has solidarity with the invisible workers in our A.I. industry.
Bio: Saiph Savage is the co-director of the Civic Innovation Lab at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM) and director of the HCI Lab at West Virginia University. Her research involves the areas of Crowdsourcing, Social Computing and Civic Technology. For her research, Saiph has been recognized as one of the 35 Innovators under 35 by the MIT Technology Review. Her work has been covered in the BBC, Deutsche Welle, and the New York Times. Saiph frequently publishes in top tier conferences, such as ACM CHI, AAAI ICWSM, the Web Conference, and ACM CSCW, where she has also won honorable mention awards. Saiph has received grants from the National Science Foundation, as well as funding from industry actors such as Google, Amazon, and Facebook Research. Saiph has opened the area of Human-Computer Interaction at West Virginia University and has advised Governments in Latin America to adopt Human-Centered Design and Machine Learning to deliver smarter and more effective services to citizens. Saiph’s students have obtained fellowships and internships in both industry (e.g., Facebook Research, Twitch Research, and Microsoft Research) and academia (e.g., Oxford Internet Institute.) Saiph holds a bachelor’s degree in Computer Engineering from UNAM, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Dr.Savage has also been a Visiting Professor in the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU).