How to Avoid Being Misled by Biased AI

The Implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) AI has now become an indispensable aspect of contemporary life, owing to its multifaceted advantages. However, there are downsides to its usage that include elevated developmental expenses and ethical quandaries. AI may showcase partiality towards particular individuals or groups, highlighting that, despite popular belief, its impartiality isn’t guaranteed considering its human origins.

Studies have confirmed the link between bias and several detrimental results, such as substandard healthcare, augmented interest rates, unjust legal policies, and prejudiced hiring. Therefore, it becomes crucial to identify the underlying reasons for this problem and to take active measures to tackle it. This encompasses investigating how AI can perpetuate discrimination and recognizing the diverse types of partiality that can emerge as a result.

Triggers of Partiality in AI Systems

When examining the problem of partiality in AI systems, it is important to take into consideration two major factors. Firstly, the ramifications of bias need to be examined in a more in-depth manner. Secondly, the features of AI that could give rise to partiality should also be acknowledged. This outline is derived from statistics presented by the World Economic Forum.

  • Unconscious bias

    Bigotry that is not deliberately recognized can be targeted against individuals owing to their skin colour, gender, physical or mental ability, sexual orientation or social class.
  • Sampling bias

    occurs when a data sample taken from a population does not precisely reflect the authentic composition of the population.
  • Unintentional or deliberate bias towards the past, present, or future

    develops when designers and constructors disregard the possibility of alterations in circumstances that might arise before concluding a project.
  • Overdependence on the training data

    transpires when the AI algorithm accurately anticipates outcomes present in the training dataset, but is unable to replicate those results with fresh data.
  • Boundary and outlier issues

    data that is situated beyond the confines of the training dataset, leading to difficulties for machine learning.


An investigation published in the New England Journal of Medicine has suggested that some technologies, like pulse oximeters employed to evaluate blood oxygen saturation, could be less accurate for individuals with darker skin tones, especially in medical field. This might be perceived as a type of racial bias.

Studies on Artificial Intelligence (AI) have demonstrated that it can tend to make flawed presumptions about individuals from various racial backgrounds. For example, an examination of the language model GPT-3 unveiled that the results were frequently violent in nature when the phrase “Two Muslims stepped into a…” was given, instead of when using keywords like “Christians,” “Jews,” “Sikhs,” or “Buddhists.”

One of the researchers in the study emphasised the parallels between AI algorithms and infants in terms of their capability to learn reading skills fast, but not comprehending the more intricate nuances of language. It is remarked that AI algorithms depend on the internet for acquiring data, making them incapable of ascertaining the suitability of certain words, images, and other factors in a particular context, because they lack contextual comprehension.


Gender can also contribute to generating dilemmas. For instance, a training dataset for a tool created to assist in discovering job openings founded on present and past employees might induce an AI to deduce that females are unsuitable contenders for job openings at a predominantly male-oriented tech establishment.

Google Translate has been reported to display gender bias in its use of masculine pronouns for activities that are often linked with females, like “he invests” and “she takes care of the children.” This form of translation reinforces antiquated gender stereotypes, even though efforts have been made to eliminate them for many years.

Facial recognition is one more field of AI that might display predisposition against women, as demonstrated in the video shown below.


There is an opinion that age discrimination may be upheld in Artificial Intelligence (AI) owing to the elderly being underrepresented in research and decision-making. An article published in The Conversation theorises that as AI relies on data, the limited participation of older people in that information might cause it to support or even enlarge age-related preconceptions in its output.

Numerous datasets are founded on studies probing the health of the elderly, with little consideration for the prospect of graceful aging. A recent article on The Conversation emphasised how this could lead to “a detrimental cycle that hampers not only elderly’s use of AI but also leads to fewer data being obtained from these populations, which could enhance AI precision.” A broad definition of “older adults,” which encompasses those aged 50 and above, may obscure the necessities of certain age groups, such as those in their 50s to 60s, 60s to 70s, and 70s to 80s.


According to research conducted by Stanford University, the precision of prediction techniques employed to determine the likelihood of lower-income households and minority borrowers repaying large loans for significant purchases like a house is between 5 and 10 percent less accurate than those applied to assess higher-income and non-minority groups. This implies the existence of significant income or class bias, frequently unaddressed.

The problem originates with the data itself, which is discovered to be less dependable in predicting the creditworthiness of specific demographics due to their typically brief credit records. Assessing the creditworthiness of individuals who have taken out very few loans and have limited or no credit-card access is more problematic. By not extending credit opportunities to such applicants, the possibilities of enhancing their financial position, like improving their credit score or investing in resources with ascending property worth, are missed.

Preventative Measures

Recognising the existence of bias in AI is the primary move towards its elimination. Although it may be uncomfortable, developers must acknowledge that this bias is indicative of human bias but can be minimised. The second step involves procuring data on the outcomes via user surveys and interviews. The third step entails introducing protective measures to counteract this problem. Discrimination might result in numerous negative impacts; it is therefore crucial to adopt these measures to prevent subsequent marginalisation, exclusion, and inequality.

Current events have accentuated the intricacy of the problem, exemplified by the discovery of a racist insult in an Amazon product description. Creating an algorithm to prevent such terms from appearing would be challenging, as it would necessitate the removal of hundreds of book titles from the site. Nonetheless, developers are making strides toward improvement through enhanced data collection, higher-calibre training data, employment of multiple datasets, and other kinds of algorithmic polishing.

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