Artificial Intelligence and Inequality in the Middle East: The Political Economy of Inclusion

The Oxford Handbook of Ethics of AI, Edited by Markus D. Dubber, Frank Pasquale, and Sunit Das, Jul 2020, ISBN: 9780190067397, DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190067397.013.40

39 Pages Posted: 1 Sep 2020

See all articles by Nagla Rizk

Nagla Rizk

American University in Cairo - School of Business; American University in Cairo - Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D)

Date Written: May 1, 2019

Abstract

This chapter looks at the challenges, opportunities, and tensions facing the equitable development of artificial intelligence (AI) in the MENA region in the aftermath of the Arab Spring. While diverse in their natural and human resource endowments, countries of the region share a commonality in the predominance of a youthful population amid complex political and economic contexts. Rampant unemployment — especially among a growing young population — together with informality, gender, and digital inequalities, will likely shape the impact of AI technologies, especially in the region’s labor-abundant resource- poor countries. The chapter then analyzes issues related to data, legislative environment, infrastructure, and human resources as key inputs to AI technologies which in their current state may exacerbate existing inequalities. Ultimately, the promise for AI technologies for inclusion and helping mitigate inequalities lies in harnessing grounds-up youth entrepreneurship and innovation initiatives driven by data and AI, with a few hopeful signs coming from national policies.

Keywords: artificial intelligence, MENA, Arab Spring, young population, unemployment, digital inequalities, AI technologies, human resources, youth entrepreneurship, national policies

JEL Classification: O1, O15, O17, O3, O32, O33, O34, O38

Suggested Citation

Rizk, Nagla, Artificial Intelligence and Inequality in the Middle East: The Political Economy of Inclusion (May 1, 2019). The Oxford Handbook of Ethics of AI, Edited by Markus D. Dubber, Frank Pasquale, and Sunit Das, Jul 2020, ISBN: 9780190067397, DOI: 10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190067397.013.40 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3659290

Nagla Rizk (Contact Author)

American University in Cairo - School of Business ( email )

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HOME PAGE: http://www1.aucegypt.edu/faculty/naglarzk/

American University in Cairo - Access to Knowledge for Development Center (A2K4D) ( email )

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