We are studying the development of AI tools and applications on the African continent. A specific focus of this work is characterizing the extent to which gender is considered during such development. We are also interested in characterizing biases in AI products and projects in Africa, and determining whether such biases involve gender in ways that are similar to AI developed outside the continent.
Although still a niche area of ICT in Africa, AI has significant potential for influencing many aspects of African cultures and economies. Such influence includes NGOs using AI to predict migration and natural disasters, governments using AI to process national datasets and improve service delivery, and companies using AI to predict market trends. By researching AI tools, products, trends, and impacts, we seek to contribute to the conversations that will help to positively steer the impact of AI. In particular, we aim to ensure that gender issues are significantly and continuously addressed as AI becomes more widely adopted.