According to the World Economic Forum, only 22 per cent of AI professionals globally in 2018 were women. This increased marginally to 26 percent in 2020 but is no match against the rapid overall growth of the field. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics have historically been male dominated, so the limited presence of women in AI might not be surprising. Furthermore, according to the AI Now Institute, women comprise only 15 and 10 percent of AI research staff at Facebook and Google, respectively. This further highlights the pervasiveness of gender inequality in AI. Singapore, together with Italy and South Africa, have the smallest gender gaps in this field where women comprise on average 28 per cent of the AI talent pool. Is there a model Singapore can offer to the rest of the world?
Organised by the Future Issues and Technology Research Cluster with support from the Centre of Excellence for National Security and the Singapore Computer Society.
About the Panellists
Dorien Herremans is an Assistant Professor at the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), where she is also Director of the Game Lab. Dr Herremans had a joint appointment at the Institute of High-Performance Computing, A*STAR from 2017-2020 and worked as a certified instructor for the NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute. Prior to SUTD, she was a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Fellow at the Centre for Digital Music, Queen Mary University of London. She received her PhD in Applied Economics on the topic of computer generation and classification of music through operations research methods and graduated as a business engineer in management information systems from the University of Antwerp in 2005. After that, she worked as a Drupal consultant and was an IT lecturer at the Les Roches University in Bluche, Switzerland. Her research is on the intersection of music and AI and she currently leads the Audio, Music, and AI Lab (AMAAI) at SUTD.
Hallam Stevens is a Professor of Interdisciplinary Studies in the College of Arts, Society and Education at James Cook University in Townsville, Australia. His research is focused on the social impact of technology, particularly in the domains of information technology and biotechnologies. He is the author of Life Out of Sequence: A Data-Driven History of Bioinformatics (Chicago, 2013), Biotechnology and Society: An Introduction (Chicago, 2016), and the co-editor of Postgenomics: Perspective on Life After the Genome (Duke, 2015).
Tamara Nair is a Research Fellow at the Centre for Non-Traditional Security Studies, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. She is concurrently the Coordinator of Projects (Women and Children in the ASEAN Community). Dr Nair graduated from the National University of Singapore with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and Geography and went on to train at the National Institute of Education. She obtained a Masters in Environmental Management, a Graduate Diploma in Arts Research and a PhD in Development Studies from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia. Her current research focuses on issues of power and the biopolitics of labour and technology, human security and human development, and the Women, Peace and Security agenda in the region. She is Singapore’s representative to the ASEAN Women for Peace Registry and NTU’s representative in the ASEAN University Network’s Human Rights and Peace Education.