Empowering Local Communities Using Artificial Intelligence

Paper by Yen-Chia Hsu et al: “Many powerful Artificial Intelligence (AI) techniques have been engineered with the goals of high performance and accuracy. Recently, AI algorithms have been integrated into diverse and real-world applications. It has become an important topic to explore the impact of AI on society from a people-centered perspective. Previous works in citizen science have identified methods of using AI to engage the public in research, such as sustaining participation, verifying data quality, classifying and labeling objects, predicting user interests, and explaining data patterns. These works investigated the challenges regarding how scientists design AI systems for citizens to participate in research projects at a large geographic scale in a generalizable way, such as building applications for citizens globally to participate in completing tasks. In contrast, we are interested in another area that receives significantly less attention: how scientists co-design AI systems “with” local communities to influence a particular geographical region, such as community-based participatory projects. Specifically, this article discusses the challenges of applying AI in Community Citizen Science, a framework to create social impact through community empowerment at an intensely place-based local scale. We provide insights in this under-explored area of focus to connect scientific research closely to social issues and citizen needs…(More)”.