I’ve just returned from a panel discussion on AI and Ethics, wherein a panel of professionals discuss some tactics that businesses can implement to combat the biases in their AI solutions. I walked away with an understanding that one of the main causes in bias in AI modeling stems from a poor exploration of the data. I believe the quote was 90% of these biases are caused by poor data exploration.
I’m currently reading a book called Ask for It. It’s about empowering and encouraging people to negotiate to get what they want. The book mentions that women are less likely to negotiate than men and that it’s important that we change that. I’m inspired, encouraged, and INFURIATED.
I have asked for it and been ignored and rejected, but this is not why I’m angry.
I’m angry because I have witnessed folks receive a promotion, a job, a career, without having to ask anyone. . .
A former friend or colleague got promoted, realized they needed a director and just called them up, offered them a job, told them exactly what to put on the resume and voila! It didn’t even matter that they hadn’t done traditional IT work in over nine months. There was no returnship program required. The VP is hiring – THAT GUY! There’s a story around here somewhere about how I know about him.
Or maybe it’s just a manager who decided that he wants to hire his old work buddy so he calls him up and not only does he tell the guy what to put on his resume, he gives him word-for-word answers to the phone screening with the director. After he pulls him into the office, he tells his buddy that he’s got the necessary skills that everyone’s got – to log onto a computer – and what’s that? You weren’t confident enough to apply for a high enough position on the payroll. No worries! You just got promoted anyway, within the year.
Now I’m reading a book about how I have to ask for it.
Meanwhile, there’s a stigma on the rise. We’re looking at some of the reasons why Black people and women are looked over for a promotion and we’re finding that it’s because our artificial intelligent models have implicit bias in them. The key to removing that bias is increasing diversity in the workforce. Then there’s the necessary discussion on equity.
Oh. But I got to ask for it.
The idea is that the behavior I’m hinting at might be considered unethical. In the grand scheme of things, when I observe the happenings; every day behavior that’s exhibited by people who are in a position to hire, and then I consider the concept of equity – I just keep thinking that I shouldn’t have to ask for it. I guess it’s illegal to train an AI model to behave the exact opposite of those unethical scenarios; but, these events occur regardless of AI. In fact, we’re still at a statistic in which 80% of people get hired because of who they know. Clearly, it’s a guy they worked with a while ago that’s the only one for the job. Even the machine learning model says so. . .
In the recommendation from today’s AI and Ethics meeting – the bias decreases in both the machine learning models and the hiring methods; when the leadership is made up of folks who have a diverse network of folks that we can guess will be in the hiring pool.
That’s a terrible thought process. All that just because a lot of people got together and decided that negotiation is must-have skill (well, maybe not for everyone). I mean, yeah – I shouldn’t HAVE to ask for it, but I should know how to ask for it. This book reminds, encourages, and empowers me to do so.
Five stars, coffees, wines, chocolates or whatever it is that I’m going to implement as a rating system. I don’t know yet. Who am I kidding? I’ll be rating this on Goodreads as soon as I finish the book.