Post-Doc : Inclusiveness of developing countries in the work of CEIMIA and GPAI- QC-446

Project type: Research
Desired discipline(s): Engineering - computer / electrical, Engineering, Computer science, Mathematical Sciences, Mathematics, Economics, Social Sciences & Humanities
Company: CEIMIA
Project Length: Longer than 1 year
Preferred start date: 09/01/2021
Language requirement: English with some French proficiency
Location(s): Montreal, QC, Canada; Canada; Canada
No. of positions: 1
Desired education level: Postdoctoral fellow
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About the company: 

CEIMIA's activities are organized around 2 clusters. The first one consists of supporting the international expert groups of the Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) in the design and launch of applied AI projects, anchored in international and multi-stakeholder collaboration, aiming at contributing to responsible AI. The second will promote the development of skills in responsible AI development among various stakeholders in Quebec and Canada.


The Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI) is a multi-stakeholder initiative involving 18 countries and the European Union, which aims to bridge the gap between theory and practice on AI by supporting cutting-edge research and applied activities on AI-related priorities. The PMIA consists of two centers of expertise, Montreal (CEIMIA) and Paris, and a secretariat, hosted at the OECD. GPAI will facilitate international project-oriented collaboration in a multistakeholder manner with the scientific community, industry, civil society, international organizations, and countries, taking into particular account the interests and contributions from emerging and developing countries. It will also monitor and draw on work being done domestically and internationally to identify gaps, maximize coordination and facilitate international collaboration on AI.

Describe the project.: 

The objective of this project is to develop expertise within CEIMIA and GPAI that can foster understanding of AI-related issues for countries of the Global South, foster their inclusion and support the Partnership's collaboration. The project will also seek to build links between world-class researchers from the Canadian ecosystem and members of the international ecosystems.

GPAI’s "Data Justice" projects will be central to this mandate. The objective is to help AI/ML system designers and users move beyond understanding data governance as an individualized privacy compliance issue to include considerations of equity and justice in terms of access, visibility and representation of data in AI/ML systems.

General Objectives: 

  • Ensure the development or updating of information related to AI projects in Africa.
  • Create an environment and processes that promote input, participation and consideration of African reality in GPAI activities / projects.
  • Build relationships with Southern AI ecosystem actors, particularly those in Africa to identify areas of collaboration with GPAI, CEIMIA, and Canadian AI ecosystem actors.
  • Contribute to the development of rigorous, African-specific eligibility criteria that will be used to assess the candidacy of developing countries wishing to join GPAI.
  • Ensure early and adequate consideration of African stakeholders' interests and concerns in GPAI, CEIMIA and GPAI Working Groups activities and projects.
  • Contribute directly, as a researcher, to applied research projects conducted by GPAI, CEIMIA or by AI research actors in Canada.  Prepare a report and make recommendations to promote the integration of developing country concerns in the development and use of AI.

Objectives related to the Data Justice project:

  • Actively participate in the assessment of the state of research on inequalities that leads to the unequal distribution of benefits and harms in the deployment of significant AI/ML systems in developing countries, and the extent to which current efforts at guidance address these considerations.
  • Draft preliminary recommendations for three types of stakeholders (i.e., policymakers, developers, and communities affected by AI/ML systems) of the practical questions they should likely consider to address the needs and considerations of African countries.

Required expertise/skills: 

CEIMIA has a diversity and employment equity policy, so we encourage applications from women and people from under-represened communities.

  • Have a strong interest in AI ethics and responsible AI.
  • Demonstrate a strong understanding of the issues surrounding the use of AI in developing countries, particularly in Africa.
  • Facilitate the inclusion of experts from developing countries, particularly Africa
  • Have a good knowledge of AI ecosystems in developing countries, particularly in Africa
  • Demonstrate good knowledge of issues related to the responsible use of AI.
  • Have relevant professional or academic experience in the field of responsible use of AI or data governance will be considered an asset. 
  • Possess good analytical, research and synthesis skills.
  • Have experiences demonstrating good communication and teamwork skills. 
  • Demonstrate good working and analytical skills in a multicultural, multisectoral and multidisciplinary environment. 
  • Have a good knowledge of computer tools (Google Suite, Office, Outlook, etc.).