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Can AI Help Create More Equitable Workplaces?

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Can artificial intelligence and machine learning tools help build a more equitable workforce? New research may offer a way.

"There Are No Colorblind Models in a Colorful World: How to Successfully Apply a People Analytics Tool to Build Equitable Workplaces," which received the Best White Paper award at the 2021 Wharton Analytics Conference, examines the roots of AI biases in AI recruiting tools and offer solutions that could unlock the potential of analytics tools in the human resources space.

"Decisions . . . in the HR department can have an instrumental impact on employees lives; who gets hired, who receives a promotion, or who is identified as a promising employee," says Margrét Bjarnadóttir, associate professor at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. With AI, "How can we do better? How can we build toward these more equitable workplaces?," she asks.

The first step is to apply a bias-aware analytical process that asks the right questions of the data, of modeling decisions, and of vendors, and then both monitors the statistical performance of the models, but importantly monitors the tool's impact on different employee groups.

From University of Maryland
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