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Equitable A.I. and Africa’s Futures

March 16, 2021 @ 11:00 am - August 9, 2021 @ 12:30 pm

Date & Time: March 16, 2021, 11am-12:30pm CDT

This event will be held on Zoom. Click here to register.

Event Description: AI4Afrika invites you to attend and engage with a panel of scholars and industry leaders who will discuss ways artificial intelligence could be leveraged for social good.

In this conversation, we will be emphasizing the need for a human-centric approach to AI encapsulated in the African idea of uBuntu ‘I am because we are.’

  • How can AI be used for social good?
  • How can AI help battle systemic racism and bias?
  • How can African-centered AI solve African problems?

Join our panel discussion to find answers to these questions and more. View the event handout for additional information.


Photo of Dr. José CossaJosé Cossa, Ph.D., is a Mozambican scholar, writer/author, researcher, poet, blogger, “twitterer”, podcaster, entrepreneur, and an Associate Professor in the College of Education at Pennsylvania State University. Most recently, Cossa served as a Visiting Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education at the American University in Cairo and a Senior Lecturer at Vanderbilt University’s Peabody College. Cossa holds a Ph.D. in Cultural and Educational Policy Studies with a depth area in Comparative and International Education from Loyola University Chicago. He is the author of the book Power, Politics, and Higher Education: International Regimes, Local Governments, and Educational Autonomy, the recipient of the 2012 Joyce Cain Award for Distinguished Research on People of African Descent, awarded by the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES), and a member of the MacArthur Foundation 100&Change Panel of Judges for two consecutive competitions (Inaugural Challenge and 2019/2020).


Photo of Dr. Nyalleng MoorosiNyalleng Moorosi, Ph.D. is a software engineer and researcher with the Google AI team in Accra. Since joining the Accra team, Nyalleng has been working on projects related to Inclusion and Fairness in AI as well as applications of AI in understanding cities in Africa through satellite images. Nyalleng is an active member of black in artificial intelligence group and an organizing member of the deep learning Indaba – a yearly workshop that gathers African researchers in one space to share ideas and grow machine learning and artificial intelligence capabilities. Before joining Google,  Nyalleng was a senior data science researcher at South Africa’s national science lab, Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR). In her capacity at CSIR, she worked on projects ranging from rhino poaching prevention to biomarkers detection in African cancer proteomes. Before getting into ML research at CSIR, she was a computer science lecturer at Fort Hare university and a software engineer at Thomson Reuters.


Photo of Dr. Reginold RoystonModerator

Reginold Royston, Ph.D. is an Assistant Professor of New Media and Africana Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His research examines technoculture in Ghana, West Africa, and the role of its digital diaspora in the African mediascape, in areas such as viral dance-music, podcasting, and tech entrepreneurship. He teaches courses on oral culture and digital media, Africa’s Internet, and the political economy of computing. He teaches in the Department of African Cultural Studies, and at the School of Computing, Information, and Data Sciences. With Faisal Abdu’allah, he co-curates the Black Arts + Data Futures collaborative. He is currently working on a manuscript about the impact of digital media on Ghanaian national identity.




Photo of Sheriff Issaka


Sheriff M. Issaka is a Computer Science and African Studies student at the University of Wisconsin Madison. He is a King Morgridge Scholar. Sheriff is an AI enthusiast, alarmist, and researcher. He is a research assistant for Professor Michael Ferris and Professor Reginold Royston where they use machine learning to predict feed efficiency and evaluate AI applications in Africa respectively. As part of his “AI for Africa” organization, Sheriff is working on various machine learning tasks such as machine translation of African languages, including sign language.



Photo of Keyi Wang


Keyi Wang is a Computer Science and Math student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is a junior and is passionate about applying machine learning to solve relevant societal issues. As part of the “AI for Africa” team, Keyi is building a chatbot capable of answering questions on menstrual health and sexual harrassment to be deployed in Africa.



This event is sponsored by UW–Madison’s African Studies Program and American Family Insurance Data Science Institute.


March 16, 2021 @ 11:00 am
August 9, 2021 @ 12:30 pm