BIDS Faculty Affiliate Rediet Abebe one of Forbes' "Women in AI To Watch"

November 20, 2020

BIDS Faculty Affiliate Rediet Abebe is featured in this new Forbes interview article highlighting some of AI/ML's current female role models and thought leaders who have "paved the way for young females entering the workforce." For the article, they were asked to share what they would say to their younger selves: "From controlling interview anxiety to overcoming imposter syndrome, here’s what they have to say."

From Women In AI To Watch (November 17, 2020, Aparna Dhinakaran, Forbes):


Rediet Abebe, Incoming Assistant Professor at UC Berkeley 

Throughout my undergraduate and large portions of my graduate career, I strongly felt that my ideas and perspectives that make me different were a weakness — that I should try to be as "typical" and conventional a researcher as possible to "make it." This played out in a number of different ways from limiting the domains I drew research problems from to what techniques I felt I should prioritize. 

It was during my second year of my Ph.D. work that I made a deliberate decision to do this work in a way that more-deeply resonated with me. My research now focuses on using algorithmic, computational, and mechanism design techniques to improve access to opportunity for historically disadvantaged communities. I co-organize MD4SG, a multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary research initiative on this topic, and Black in AI, a non-profit organization tackling equity issues in AI. I work with various government and non-government organizations, such as the NIH and community-based initiatives, to tackle problems facing marginalized communities. I approach my work more holistically so that different aspects of it — the research, teaching, mentoring, and equity work — are intertwined and inform one another. I have benefited greatly from this conscious decision that I made to define my own goals and be an AI researcher in a way that made the most sense to me, even if it looked atypical or non-standard. I would encourage any junior or aspiring researchers to do the same!


Read the full article:
Women In AI To Watch
November 17, 2020  |   Aparna Dhinakaran  |   Forbes

Featured Fellows

Rediet Abebe

EECS, UC Berkeley
Faculty Affiliate