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AI for Good: DataRobot launches new programme to empower non-profits

DataRobot, the enterprise AI company, has launched a new programme specifically to help ‘social good’ organisations to utilise AI and automated machine learning when attempting to solve global challenges.

AI for Good: Powered by DataRobot will see DataRobot collaborate with up to 10 organisations in 2019 to develop automated machine learning applications that improve the lives of more than one million people, according to the company.

This new programme comes off the back of DataRobot’s partnership with the Global Water Challenge. Working in African nations DataRobot helped to enhance water access in areas such as Sierra Leone and Liberia.

The Global Water Challenge, a coalition of leading companies and NGOs dedicated to solving the world's most pressing water challenges, worked with DataRobot to successfully analyse more than 500,000 data points to predict waterpoint breaks in these countries.

With this information, local governments have been able to proactively identify at-risk waterpoints and better manage water-related budgets and programs for repairs and new construction, DataRobot states.

Sierra Leone Ministry of Water Resources program officer for monitoring and evaluation, Mohamed Bah, says, “DataRobot has provided a life-saving solution for the people of Sierra Leone. By detecting future waterpoint failures, we've been able to give proper directives that help ensure all people have regular access to water.

“This not only helps improve population health but also can significantly cut down individuals' time spent searching for water. Improved water access allows people to resume daily tasks, like attending school and their jobs, which drastically improves quality of life and gender equity.”

As part of the new programme, AI for Good, partners will receive pro-bono cloud licenses to DataRobot's platform, as well as training and one-on-one support from the company's data scientists, field engineers, and AI success managers.

DataRobot’s solution is designed to enable organisations including those with limited data science headcount and technical budget to build, deploy, and monitor AI models.

As such, the solution is suited for non-profit organisations and can help them leverage data insights from the automated machine learning platform to achieve business strategies that support cause-based initiatives.

AI for Good, DataRobot customer-facing data scientist and head, Chandler McCann, says, “Non-profits are doing incredible work to solve complex challenges related to issues like climate change, cybercrime, and sustainable development, and there is a massive opportunity for that work to be amplified by AI.”

“With the support of DataRobot's state of the art technology, Global Water Challenge and countries within Africa were able to harness the power of machine learning to further the mission of water access. Through our new AI for Good program, we will leverage our leadership in enterprise AI to do more of this work with non-profits and support positive change,” says McCann.

Social good organisations interested in participating in DataRobot's AI for Good program need to complete an online application at datarobot.com/ai-for-good.

These will then be evaluated with help from GlobalGiving, a partner in community-led philanthropy, organisations will be evaluated based on data availability and quality, applicability of machine learning, and project scalability.