Image Source: World Economic Forum

Where is artificial intelligence headed in 2021? This question took center stage at the annual World Economic Forum (WEF) gathering of leaders known as Davos. Each year, Davos provides an important snapshot of the topics shaping the agendas for business leaders, heads of state, economists, and many other influential people. At Davos 2021 (held virtually), the consensus was that leaders need to take a more purpose-driven approach to incorporating AI – one that takes into account the larger needs of people and society. At Moonshot, we could not agree more. Purpose-driven AI aligns with our own belief in mindful AI.

The News

  • At Davos, leaders discussed how AI has demonstrated potential for making society better. As Journalist Jennifer Schekner noted, AI has the potential to speed up drug development and our ability to eradicate diseases, which is especially relevant to the times we’re living in right now. But as she asked, “ . . . what happens if we give away all the data and leave all these AI-led discoveries to a small number of global monopolists? Will we end up worse off, with even more unequal access to medical care?”
  • In addition, speakers at Davos agreed that “AI’s potential requires strong buy-in from citizens and governments, based on their trust that AI is being built and used ethically and will be applied for the public good and not just profit a few corporations.”
  • To that end, Klaus Schwab, founder and executive chairman of the WEF, announced the formation of the Global AI Action Alliance “to shape a positive, human-centred future for AI at this decisive moment in its development.”
  • Members of the alliance will work together to identify and implement the most promising tools and practices for ensuring AI systems are ethical and serve all society members, including groups historically under-represented in the AI ecosystem.

Why This News Matters to Business

  • The formation of the Global AI Action Alliance reflects a growing movement to put people at the center of AI experience design.
  • For example, recently Moonshot’s Ahmer Inam advocated for mindful AI, which he defined as “Being aware and purposeful of the intentions and emotions we hope to evoke through an artificial intelligent experience.”
  • At a recently conducted Cognilytica event, Ahmer Inam and Moonshot’s Mark Persaud elaborated on the components of mindful AI:
    • Human-centered: end-to-end human-in-the-loop integration in the AI solution development lifecycle, from concept, discovery, data collection, model testing, and training to scaling to drive lovable engagements with measurable outcomes.
    • Responsible: ensure that AI systems are free of bias and that they are grounded in ethics. Being mindful of how, why, and where data is created and their ethical impact on downstream AI systems.
    • Trustworthy: transparent and explainable in how the AI model is trained, how it works, and why they recommend the outcomes.
  • As Mark Persaud said, “Mindful AI is about bringing fulfillment to the people that we connect with through our intelligent digital experiences.”

What Business Should Do

Businesses can do a lot more than aspire to embrace mindful AI. They can use tools that actually help design mindful AI solutions. For example, the mindful AI canvass keeps product designers focused on human wants and needs by requiring them to document human emotional needs and AI’s connection to meeting those needs, including:

  • Emotions: what feelings doe the AI-based product experience evoke?
  • Intentions: what is the desired relationship between the person and the product?
  • Trust: how will the experience ensure privacy, security, and integrity?

In addition, design sprints keep product designers focused on people because the workshops require teams to vet design ideas against the needs of real people.

Mindful AI is more than a concept; it’s a rallying cry for AI’s future, supported by tools any business can use. If you’re interested in learning more about the Mindful AI Canvas, please feel free to download here or get in touch.