NEW YORK – On March 30, NYU McSilver Chief AI Officer Minerva Tantoco was among the executives who shared career advice and insights with Year Up young adult students at a special “Break the Bias” event for Women’s History Month. The students on the Zoom call are currently interns at leading technology and financial companies. Tantoco served as New York City’s first-ever Chief Technology Officer, after which she co-founded Grasshopper Bank, among other achievements in the technology and fintech arenas. Her remarks begin at the 1:00 mark in the video.
One of the students asked Tantoco her about how bias in artificial intelligence-driven systems can be addressed. “Algorithms can actually perpetuate the biases that are already out there,” she replied. “I’m a huge believer that a big part of the solution is to have more diversity amongst AI scientists, as well as more education for the people that use AI.” She addressed the data sets that are used by AI systems as well. “When you talk about facial recognition [for example], the training data did not include women or people of color, and therefore it’s less accurate. So my thesis is that bias is a bug. And like any bug, you need to fix it.”
Tantoco leads The AI Hub at McSilver, which has been established to investigate how artificial intelligence-driven (AI) systems can be used to equitably address poverty and challenges relating to race and public health, and to provide thought leadership on the implications.