For the past more than 15 years, my team and I have been focused on AI for social impact, deploying end-to-end systems in areas of public health, conservation and public safety. In this talk, I will highlight the results from our deployments for public health, as well as the AI and multiagent systems innovations that were necessary. I will first present our work with the world's two largest mobile health programs for maternal and child care that have served millions of beneficiaries. In one of these, our deployment significantly cut attrition and doubled health information exposure for those with least access. Additionally, I will highlight results from an earlier project on HIV prevention and others. The key challenge in all of these applications is one of optimizing limited intervention resources. To address this challenge, I will discuss advances in restless multi-armed bandits, decision-focused learning in predict-then-optimize systems, and influence maximization in social networks, and also discuss their broader applicability. In pushing this research agenda, our ultimate goal is to facilitate local communities and non-profits to directly benefit from advances in AI tools and techniques.
Milind Tambe is Gordon McKay Professor of Computer Science and Director of Center for Research in Computation and Society at Harvard University; concurrently, he is also Principal Scientist and Director for "AI for Social Good" at Google Research. He is recipient of the IJCAI John McCarthy Award, AAAI Feigenbaum Prize, AAAI Robert S. Engelmore Memorial Lecture Award, AAMAS ACM Autonomous Agents Research Award, INFORMS Wagner prize for excellence in Operations Research practice and MORS Rist Prize. He is a fellow of AAAI and ACM. For his work on AI and public safety, he has received Columbus Fellowship Foundation Homeland security award and commendations and certificates of appreciation from the US Coast Guard, the Federal Air Marshals Service and airport police at the city of Los Angeles.