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Guiding Questions

Our guiding questions include:

  • What would be lost from human creativity and diversity if writers or visual artists come to rely on predictive models trained on selective datasets that exclude the majority of the world’s many cultures and languages?
  •  What frameworks or evaluation practices might help to concretize what is meant by “intelligence,” “understanding,” or “creativity”–for machines as well as humans? How might such humanistic interventions help diverse citizens to participate in the design and implementation of generative technologies and the benchmarks that evaluate them? 
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of current statistical models–which generate outputs probabilistically (by privileging dominant patterns) and selectively (based on scraped data)–in modeling the lived knowledge, embodied cognition, and metareflection that informs human communication, art, and cultural production? 
  • If evidence suggests that “generative AI” is harmful–and/or counter to the professed object of enhancing human lifeworlds–what alternatives might be forged through community participation in research that rearticulates goals, and reframes design from the bottom up? What kinds of teaching, research, community practices, and policies might sustain these humanist-inflected and justice-oriented design processes?

Although the DESIGN JUSTICE AI outlook will not reject the potential utility of “generative AI” out of hand, our research questions go to the heart of what inclusive collaborations can contribute to the study of resource-intensive technologies that aim to monetize and “disrupt” human communication and creativity. 

DESIGN JUSTICE AI is an interdisciplinary collaboration exploring  community-centered engagement of  “Generative AI” (the statistical modeling and synthesis of human languages, communication, arts, and cultures).