PAI Program Initiative Fellowship: Methodologies for Inclusion

The Partnership on AI (PAI) is seeking a Fellow to create and pilot a series of events, processes, and methodologies that enable PAI to systematically include diverse perspectives in all of PAI’s research and policy work, especially those that are otherwise under represented in the AI ecosystem today. The Fellow will work with PAI staff across the partnerships, research, and policy teams and will report to the Director of Partnerships, though reporting structures may change over time. The Fellowship will begin March 2020 and last for 9-12 months. 


Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are rapidly transforming society. These technologies are being integrated across industries from healthcare to farming, banking to grocery shopping, fundamentally reshaping society and daily life.  Automation is changing how critical decisions are made in the public sector as well, including applications in criminal justice, public services, policing, and financial access. AI technology holds potential promise to generate great value, but at a time when inequality is on the rise, who benefits and who is further marginalized is arguably one of the most critical questions of our time. 

It is a central aspect of the Partnership on AI’s mission to provide an open and inclusive platform for discussion and engagement, and to create and support opportunities for AI researchers, product developers, individuals representing diverse disciplines and communities, and other key stakeholders to communicate directly and openly with each other about relevant issues to AI and its influences on people and society. An essential aspect of this work is focused on ensuring that the experiences and expertise held by communities and individuals that are often adversely affected by AI are meaningfully engaged in the design, deployment, and governance of AI systems. 

This is an invitation to collaboratively drive emergent work at the intersection of technology and society. Successful candidates will thrive in entrepreneurial environments, create structure and definition as needed, and navigate ambiguity with patience and optimism.

The PAI Fellow will have the ability to further scope and shape the project, however the following is a basis for the project’s trajectory:

  • Build out the Partnership on AI’s capacity for implementing the University of Washington’s Tech Policy Lab’s Diverse Voices methodology by comprehensively mapping relevant PAI stakeholders and forging new community relationships where PAI currently has gaps. Activities will include:

    • Identifying and creating paths of engagement with stakeholders (communities most likely impacted AND not likely to be consulted);

    • Building trust with community organizations and recruiting experiential expert panelists to provide input on PAI projects, and facilitating feedback panels;

    • Analyzing and synthesizing feedback into PAI projects.

  • Create and pilot methods to solicit expertise, input, and feedback from stakeholders likely to be impacted and unlikely to be consulted to ensure PAI projects are shaped by those who would otherwise be marginalized from AI development, deployment, and governance activities or who could be adversely affected by developers’ unintended consequences. These methods could include creating an experiential expert bureau, surveys, and convenings.

  • Create and pilot adaptations of the Diverse Voices method that are less resource intensive and more nimble for PAI projects that span a range of investment, timelines, and robustness of feedback needed. 

PAI is a fast-paced organization that often requires quick turnarounds, so initiative and efficiency is critical for success in this position. Because of the varied and dynamic nature of PAI’s multistakeholder research projects, the ideal candidate should have experience working on projects with diverse and stakeholders. 

Key Responsibilities (including, but not limited to):

  • Refine and plan a practical and robust research and engagement methodology in service of the objectives outlined above;

  • Execute the plan in a manner that leverages the Partnership’s voice and perspective, rather than one company, lab, or organization’s;

  • Identify stakeholders (communities most likely impacted AND not likely to be consulted) relevant to a suite of PAI projects including ABOUT ML;

  • Build trust with community organizations; 

  • Recruit experiential expert panelists to provide input on PAI projects, and facilitate feedback panels;

  • Analyze and synthesize feedback into PAI projects;

  • Develop a suite of methodologies for inclusion of communities most likely impacted AND not likely to be consulted to pilot in PAI’s projects;

  • Work collaboratively with other PAI teams and external stakeholders; 

  • Attend relevant events, convenings, and conferences.

Preferred qualifications:

  • High cultural competency and comfort with a wide range of communities, especially those which are marginalized and disempowered

  • Knowledge of qualitative and quantitative research and user-centered design methods

  • Demonstrated track record of or interest in cross-disciplinary engagement

  • Excellent written and spoken communication skills

  • Comfort navigating diverse input from a wide array of contributors

  • Ability to translate research insights into solutions for practical implementation

  • Practical experience in areas such as community organizing and program design 

  • Prior experience with the Diverse Voices methodology and/or running focus groups

  • Fluency in multiple languages.

PAI is proud to be an equal opportunity employer.  We celebrate diversity and we are committed to creating an inclusive environment in all aspects of employment, including recruiting, hiring, promoting, training, education assistance, social and recreational programs, compensation, benefits, transfers, discipline, and all privileges and conditions of employment.  Employment decisions at PAI are based on business needs, job requirements, and individual qualifications.

PAI will consider for employment qualified applicants with criminal histories, in a manner consistent with the San Francisco Fair Chance Ordinance or similar laws.

The Partnership on AI may become subject to certain governmental record keeping and reporting requirements for the administration of civil rights laws and regulations. We also track diversity in our workforce for the purpose of improving over time. In order to comply with these goals, the Partnership on AI invites employees to voluntarily self-identify their gender and race/ethnicity. Submission of this information is voluntary and refusal to provide it will not jeopardize or adversely affect employment or any consideration you may receive for employment or advancement.  The information obtained will be kept confidential.  

Application Materials:

1.    Resume and/or CV

2.    Cover Letter that includes one way you would recommend PAI consider soliciting feedback from vulnerable communities and incorporating it into our work. 

3.    3 References [name, title, email, phone]

The application deadline has been extended to June 1, 2020.