Professors Vaast and Pinsonneault awarded 2021 SSHRC Insight Grant

Published: 22 July 2021

Emmanuelle Vaast, Professor of Information Systems and Alain Pinsonneault, Professor of Information Systems, awarded 2021 SSHRC Insight Grant

“Illuminating social diversity in Artificial Intelligence expertise”

Developments in Artificial Intelligence (AI) have unleashed a potential for deep transformations of societies and for great innovations. The rise of AI has led to such a fast-growing demand for AI experts that it has been challenging for AI-focused organizations to hire and retain AI experts. As in many other technical knowledge domains, as a domain of work, AI tends to be socially homogenous. Moreover, the limited social diversity among AI experts has been associated with one key yet so-far under-examined cause of bias associated with AI. There is a thus pressing practical need to grow the pool of AI expertise and to enhance the social diversity of AI experts.

This program will explain how, for a cutting-edge knowledge domain such as AI, social diversity and expertise mutually constitute each other. It will lead us to elaborate upon how the social diversity of experts affects experts' practices as well as the processes and outcomes in terms of innovation of their practices. Further, the program will elaborate upon how AI-focused organizations manage and enhance the social diversity of their experts. It will develop an understanding of how the management of social diversity can affect the development of cutting-edge innovation.

Prof. Vaast is principal investigator with Prof. Pinsonneault as co-investigator on this grant.

Supported in part by funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council.

En partie financé par le Conseil de recherches en sciences humaines.

Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) / Conseil de recherches en sciences humaines du Canada (CRSH)



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