AAAI-20 Call for Diversity and Inclusion Activities

February 7-12, 2020
New York, New York, USA

Announcing VISA Research Scholarships!
Application Deadline: January 2, 2020


Call for Proposals

Important Dates

  • September 13, 2019: Electronic submissions due
  • October 11, 2019: Notification of acceptance or rejection

Participation in AI by groups that are underrepresented in computer science is a fraction of what is needed to have an AI workforce that reflects the diversity in society. Diversity has many facets, including races, ethnicities, genders, ages, religions, disabilities, sexual orientations, socioeconomic status, and cultural background.

We would like to invite submissions of proposals for activities that will help broaden participation in the AI field. Activities can range from lunches for specific groups, to panels, workshops to discuss the situation and propose changes, reports on outreach activities, and more.

The proposals should be short (2 pages, pdf) and should address the following:

  1. What activity is proposed and its specific objectives
  2. Who will be the chair of the activity
  3. What is the target audience (academics, industry, graduate students, undergraduate students, etc)
  4. What is expected number of participants
  5. Duration of the proposed activity (1/2 day, 1 day, 2 hours, etc)
  6. Will the activity be by invitation only or will it need an open call for participation/registration/submission, and
  7. what is the expected timeline (call out, deadline, notification)
  8. Funding needed (if any) and potential sources of funding

VISA Research Scholarships

As part of the commitment to inclusion and diversity, Visa Research is offering two scholarships of up to $2500 to cover students’ cost of registration and attendance at AAAI 2020. The scholarships will help students to learn from other scholars through participating in a prestigious conference and associated professional gatherings and networking events.

The scholarship is intended to support female students pursuing a graduate degree in computer science or other related fields at an accredited US-based institution.

If you wish to be considered for this scholarship please submit your resume and a recommendation letter from your advisor showing the relevance of the conference to your research interests and career goals. Make sure your email address is in the resume otherwise we will not know how to reach you.

Submit the files by uploading them to by ** January 2, 2020 **.

You will be asked for your first name, last name, and email. By submitting your resume, you agree that you might be contacted by Visa Research about your research interests and possible future collaboration.

A committee from AAAI and Visa Research will review the applications and select the award recipients, which will be contacted individually. 

Diversity and Inclusion Chair

Maria Gini
University of Minnesota, USA

Accepted Proposals

Information about how to REGISTER for each of these programs will be available in January.


  • Workshop on Diversity in Artificial Intelligence: Artificial Intelligence – Diversity, Belonging, Equity, and Inclusion (AIDBEI): Mentoring Students from Underserved Populations (3 HOURS)
    Recognizing intrinsic links between students from underserved populations, the frequent incidence among these students of intersectional identity, and a desire to help their communities, this workshop will consist of presentations and a panel discussion on mentoring students from such populations – the challenges and opportunities. The primary objective is to discuss work at the nexus of inclusive AI education, education research pertinent to AI and underrepresented groups of students, and AI for Good as applicable to underserved students’ own communities, and to help share the word about efforts to serve such students.
    New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Organizer: William Hsu, Kansas State University


  • AI – Its Purpose & Power. Humans – Our Purpose & Power
    A hands-on workshop for those of us who are new to AI. During AAAI’s annual conference in NYC February, 2020, Technovation, a global technology education nonprofit and Cooper Union, will host an “Intro to AI” workshop for the broader public, and educators. The workshop will introduce the basics of AI and how to identify and address meaningful problems, aligned with the UN SDGs, using AI-based technologies. The workshop will conclude with real-world insights and strategies from young women who have used technology (mobile and AI) to address SDGs in their communities.
    Registration required.
    New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Organizer: Tara Chklovski (Technovation)
    Event Website and Registration:
  • Try AI (HALF-DAY)
    Activity for high-school female students. Volunteers please contact the organizer, Elizabeth Bondi <>
    City College of New York
    Organizers: Elizabeth Bondi (Harvard University), Alexis Stokes (Harvard University), Isha Puri (Harvard University), Anika Puri (Horace Greeley High School)
  • Undergraduate Workshop on AI-Powered Robotics
    Activity for undergraduates interested in AI and intelligent robots. On Saturday, participants will work in teams using Calypso and the Cozmo robot to build demos or games that illustrate how artificial intelligence can improve our lives. Then, on Sunday, they will host a free, open event where members of the public can experience their creations.
    Saturday: Hunter College, NYC Sunday: American Museum of Natural History (
    Registration required. Application deadline – Friday, January 17, 2020.
    Organizers: David Touretzky (CMU), Roozbeh Aliabadi (ReadyAI LLC), Anita Raja (Hunter College)


  • Women’s Mentoring Breakfast
    The gender gap in computer science has been well-documented. One way to make our field more inclusive toward women is to increase the visibility of mid- and advanced-career women in our field. The Women’s Mentoring Breakfast at AAAI-20 will give women students and early-career researchers the opportunity to meet women leaders in the field.
    New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Registration required.
    Organizer: Maria Chang (IBM)
  • DivinAI Hackfest: How Diverse are Top Artificial Intelligence Conferences?
    Are you curious about how diverse are top Artificial Intelligence conferences? If you want to contribute to build and publish diversity indexes of these conferences by gathering data about keynotes, authors and organisers, you are more than welcome to join us!
    The goal of this event is to do crowdsourcing data gathering, by checking the websites of top AI conferences and collecting data about keynotes, authors and organisers. The results of these hackfests will be included in the website:

    We will spend a great day with other people, great keynotes fun and even some gifts.

    Please bring your laptop!

    New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Organizers: Ana Freire (Universitat Pompeu Fabra, Spain), Emilia Gómez (Joint Research Centre, European Commission)


  • Promoting Deaf inclusion and Collaboration in Artificial Intelligence
    An activity in which hearing participants of AAAI attempt to communicate specific computer science related topics to deaf participants using sign language. Hearing participants will be given a set of sentences they have to communicate to deaf participants. In order to learn the signs needed to communicate them, the activity will include several kiosks with an intelligent sign language tutor application called Learn2sign. After practicing the signs needed for communicating the sentences, the hearing participant will approach one deaf participants to practice their newly acquired American Sign Language skills and get feedback.
    New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Organizers: Prajwal Paudyal (Arizona State University), Ayan Banerjee (Arizona State University), Soukaina Lamrani (Arizona State University), Sandeep Gupta (Arizona State University)
  • Mid-Career Diversity Tea and Cake
    The meeting will focus on issues pertinent to researchers at mid-career levels. It is targeted to mid-career members of underrepresented communities.
    Tuesday afternoon: New York Hilton Midtown Hotel
    Registration required.
    Organizers: Rosina Weber (Drexel University), Karen Myers (SRI International Artificial Intelligence Center)

Additional Events

Black in AI Lunch
Sunday, February 9
Chair: Krystal Maughan (University of Vermont)

Black in AI was formed as a space for sharing ideas, collaborating and discussing initiatives to increase the presence of Black people in the field of Artificial Intelligence.

LatinX in AI Lunch
Monday, February 10
For reservation information, please see
Cochairs: Pablo Castro (Google), Laura Montoya (Accel.AI)

Onsite Subsidized Childcare
As part of its “Family Friendly Initiative,” AAAI provides fully subsidized childcare at its annual conference for children ages 6 months through 12 years. In addition, a private room is provided for young families and nursing mothers, as needed, throughout the conference. Children under 12 are welcome at all social events on a complimentary basis.

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