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Aspen Tech Policy Hub: Seeding Success for the Future: Equity, Technology & Policy

July 22, 2020 @ 8:00 am - 9:00 am

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Our society faces deep challenges in terms of equity. Historically rooted issues in terms of access to resources, democratic representation, and discrimination unfortunately still affect our world, and the technology and policy spheres are no exception. How might we harness, design, and think about how to use technology to achieve policy changes that would begin to mitigate these effects?

Join Aspen Tech Policy Hub Fellows as they showcase their projects focused on Seeding Success: Equity, Technology and Policy. Following the presentations, we are thrilled to be joined by Mutale Nkonde, Founder, AI For the People, who will give further remarks on the projects and on the intersection of technology, policy and equity. The projects to be presented are:

1) EdTech Equity. Black and brown students in American public schools battle discrimination in many forms. EdTech products that use AI and machine learning can amplify already existing biases and introduce new ones. Nidhi Hebbar and Madison Jacobs joined forces to enable companies, schools and parents ways to uncover and mitigate racial bias in the design and development of EdTech products.

2) Closing the Tech Funding Gap. Current technology startup capitalization policies put under-represented tech startup founders at a disadvantage, and forgo an estimated 9 million jobs and $300 billion in collective national income due to discrimination. Mariah Lichtenstern led a project to address systemic issues in investor criteria, as well as other strategies to close the tech funding gap.

3) People Powered Policy. It is difficult for cities to obtain real-time feedback from their constituents on impending policy decisions and for constituents from disenfranchised communities to get the attention of elected officials. Amy Wilson led a project that develops a strategy to encourage two-way iterative communication between city government and their constituents.


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