Amy Leibrand is an image-based artist whose focus is visual storytelling. Her photo composites explore themes ranging from isolation and escape to gender roles and ridiculous beauty standards. Her work has received international attention through exhibits in Paris, Berlin and London, and through publication in VICE magazine, New York Times Lens and LensCulture. She is treasurer of CAW: Creative Arts of Women and is co-director for Columbus Open Studio & Stage (COSS). Leibrand is a self-taught artist; however, her 17 years as a research scientist has taught her how to think critically and creatively. She uses art to clear her brain.
As a research scientist by profession, I work in the field of artificial intelligence (AI). My research team uses statistical language models to train machines to think critically, reason, connect concepts and offer inferences based on data synthesis. I see the tremendous potential of this technology. I also see the inherent pitfalls. I see the bias in the baseline data we use to feed the machine.
Our AI tool will be used to inform public health policy. Like many other AI development teams in the health care sector, we are using randomized control trials to train the AI to “learn.” The problem is that this data is riddled with human bias. The highly selective nature of trials systemically disfavors women, the elderly and patients with comorbidities. Pregnant women are almost always excluded. Oftentimes, AI in health care is trained to make decisions using skewed data; therefore, the results favor the biases.
AI is our future. If developed and used sensitively, it could mitigate inequalities by removing bias. A careless approach, however, could perpetuate inequities. My artwork presented in Futures for the Rest of Us, Catalyst, examines these potential outcomes.