Diversity & Inclusion Talks

Falaah Arif Khan


D&I Talk Title: It’s funny because it’s true - confronting scientific catechisms


Meet AI - It’s a very strange time in its life. We have a tremendous amount of data at our disposal and a tremendous potential to do good, immense interest to build and widely deploy these systems and a very real impact (including irrevocable harm) associated with this technology. The landscape is rife with problems – incentive structures and gold-rush mentality in scholarship, celebrity culture and media hype, unhealthy extremes of techno-bashing and techno-optimism and the false dichotomy between “social problems” and “engineering problems”. Nuance and critical thinking are the most valuable, yet scarce commodities! A possible first step at self-correction could be for us – as practitioners and designers of these systems – to stop taking *ourselves* so seriously and instead direct this gravitas onto the *consequences* of our work (beyond citation counts and academic accolades). How, you ask? Using the marvelous world of comics! In this talk, I’ll present my thoughts (in comic form) on some of the pressing problems in the AI landscape (broadly defined) and attempt to motivate artistic interventions as a possible solution to catechisms of the scientific landscape that we take too seriously and perhaps need to rethink. A running theme through the talk will be the need to include diverse voices and methodologies, and to define the scope of impact more broadly — what difference does any of our work make if we can’t communicate it to the people that matter?


Falaah is a first year Data Science PhD student at NYU, working with Prof Julia Stoyanovich on the ‘fairness’ and ‘robustness’ of algorithmic systems. An engineer by training and an artist by nature, Falaah creates scientific comic books to bridge together scholarship from different disciplines, and to disseminate the nuances of her research in a way that is more accessible to the general public — She runs the ‘Data, Responsibly’ and ‘We are AI’ comic series with Prof Julia Stoyanovich at NYU’s Center for Responsible AI, and the ‘Superheroes of Deep Learning’ comic series with Prof Zack Lipton (CMU). Falaah holds an undergraduate degree in Electronics and Communication Engineering (with a minor in Mathematics) from Shiv Nadar University, India, and has industry experience in building machine learning models for access management and security at Dell EMC.

Important Dates

Events Dates (AoE)
Abstract Submission for Research Track March 4th, 2022 March 21st, 2022
Submission Dates
Research Paper Submission March 11th, 2022 March 28th, 2022
Industry and Application Paper Submission March 25th, 2022 April 22nd, 2022
Tutorial Proposal Submission April 15th, 2022
Grand Challenge Solution Submission April 22th, 2022
Doctoral Symposium Submission May 13rd, 2022 May 27th, 2022
Poster and Demo Paper Submission May 12th, 2022 May 27th, 2022
Notification Dates
Author Notification Research Track May 6th, 2022
Author Notification Industry and Application Track April 22nd, 2022 May 18th, 2022
Author Notification Tutorials April 29th, 2022
Author Notification Grand Challenge May 3rd, 2022 May 9th, 2022
Author Notification Doctoral Symposium May 20th, 2022 June 3rd, 2022
Author Notification Poster & Demo May 26th, 2022 June 3rd, 2022
Camera Ready for All Tracks May 31st, 2022 June 10th, 2022
Conference 27th June – 30th June 2022

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