Future Positive


What Is AI For Good Anyways?

Season 3, Ep. 9

In recent years, a large number of AI for Good projects have been deployed all over the world, using AI to solve critical issues such as poverty, hunger and climate change. While certainly well-intentioned, these projects often miss crucial elements in their design and deployment, which can result in a large amount of fanfare but very little impact. 

In today’s episode which was recorded at AI for Good, a global summit hosted by ITU and XPRIZE, we’re joined by Sasha Luccioni, a Postdoctoral Researcher at Mila Labs in Quebec, Canada. Sasha will explores some guiding principles that will help to ensure AI is used for the biggest positive impact.

Sasha Luccioni is a Postdoctoral Researcher working with Yoshua Bengio and others on a project that uses Artificial Intelligence to visualize the consequences of climate change. She also leads various climate change-related initiatives at Mila, including projects that aim to estimate the environmental impact of Machine Learning and to analyze financial disclosures from a climate standpoint.

Her work sits at the intersection of AI and the environment with the goal to find ways to maximize the positive impacts of AI while minimizing the negative ones - be it from a research or application perspective. She is also involved in general ‘AI for Good’ projects and has been working with the United Nations and the World Health Organization to figure out ways in which AI can help tackle the Covid-19 pandemic.

She publishes under her full name, Alexandra Luccioni, and you can find a full list of her publications here. Her work has been featured in various news and media outlets such as MIT Technology Review, WIRED and the Wall Street Journal, among others, for her work on the environmental impact of AI and how to reduce it. She is also a 2020 National Geographic Explorer and holds an IVADO postdoctoral scholarship.



More Episodes

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Avatar - A Sense of Presence

Season 3, Ep. 33
How can avatars allow us to use our senses at a remote location in real time? Will we ever be able to smell and taste remotely? For this week’s Future Positive podcast, Amelia Abraham speaks with Dr. Jacki Morie – Scientist, Artist, Educator and Senior Advisor on the A.N.A Avatar XPRIZE to answer these questions and more. We also hear from four of the semifinalist teams competing in the ANA Avatar XPRIZE who take us through their approaches to creating robotic avatars that convey a sense of presence and human connection in the most remote of locations.  Forged Droids is a project that aims to create a low-cost, humanoid robotics system, which includes a robot, an immersive operator control/training system, and service for sharing the training data. Cyberselves began life at the University of Sheffield, UK.  They work at the intersection of psychology, computer science, cultural studies, and philosophy, looking at what happens to human beings as we increasingly find ourselves engaging in immersive, digital cultures and environments, including everything from social media to virtual reality spaces. Touchlab manufactures e-skin thinner than human skin which can be wrapped around hard or soft surfaces to sense pressure and location in real-time. Applications include on-land, underwater, and in space robotics & machines.Dragon Tree Labs empowers human beings to surpass distance, strength, accuracy and two-task limits.  Rooted in the collaboration of those who invent - academia, technology entrepreneurs, corporate researchers. They see their role as creating an environment where a great mixture of professors, research experts and engineers become a community for breakthrough innovations.Links: http://xprize.org  https://www.xprize.org/prizes/avatar  https://www.forgeddroids.com/ https://www.touchlab.io/