Joy Buolamwini is the poet of code

Joy founded the Algorithmic Justice League to create a world with more ethical and inclusive technology. Her TED Featured Talk on algorithmic bias has over 1 million views. Her MIT thesis methodology uncovered large racial and gender bias in AI services from companies like Microsoft, IBM, and Amazon. Her research has been covered in over 40 countries, and as a renowned international speaker, she has championed the need for algorithmic justice at the World Economic Forum and the United Nations.

She is the main character in Coded Bias, a documentary Directed by Shalini Kantayya which begins with Joy Buolamwini’s realization as an MIT student that facial-recognition technology had a harder time identifying certain types of faces — like her own dark-skinned female one — and follows her down the rabbit hole to examine the serious consequences of that seemingly minor annoyance.

She serves on the Global Tech Panel convened by the vice president of the European Commission to advise world leaders and technology executives on ways to reduce the harms of A.I.

As a creative science communicator, she has written op-eds on the impact of artificial intelligence for publications like TIME Magazine and New York Times. The annual Women’s Media Awards recognize as Joy as the Carol Jenkins award recipient for her contributions in explicating the coded gaze and its impact on gender equality presented by Women’s Media Center, founded by Jane Fonda, Robin Morgan, and Gloria Steinem. In her quest to tell stories that make daughters of diasporas dream and sons of privilege pause, her spoken word visual audit “AI, Ain’t I A Woman?” which shows AI failures on the faces of iconic women like Oprah Winfrey, Michelle Obama, and Serena Williams, as well as the Coded Gaze short, have been part of exhibitions ranging from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston to the Barbican Centre, UK.

A Rhodes Scholar and Fulbright Fellow, Joy has been named to notable lists including the Bloomberg 50Tech Review 35 under 35BBC 100 WomenForbes Top 50 Women in Tech (youngest), and Forbes 30 under 30. Fortune magazine named her “the conscience of the AI revolution“. She holds two masters degrees from Oxford University and MIT; and a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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