Scientia Associate Professor Haris Aziz honoured for contributions to Artificial Intelligence

25 Mar 2021
Scientia Associate Professor Haris Aziz

UNSW Engineering Scientia Associate Professor Haris Aziz has been honoured by the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) for his contribution to Game Theory and AI.

The AAAI has conferred Senior Member status on Associate Professor Haris Aziz, recognising his significant accomplishments in the field of artificial intelligence.

The award comes after A/Prof. Aziz was named as a research field leader in Game Theory and Decision Science in The Australian’sResearch 2020 leaderboard. He was also recently listed among the world’s top 2% of scientists in a study led by Stanford University researchers and published by PLoS Biology.

A/Prof. Aziz’s work is largely based on designing algorithms that facilitate cooperation and help organisations make fairer and better decisions. He has also collaborated with the US Air Force and the Australian Defence Force in creating algorithms that help robots cooperate with each other and achieve tasks in a distributed manner.

With AI becoming more advanced, A/Prof. Aziz says the field is becoming increasingly important.

“Many important decisions of our lives are gradually being handed to computers,” he said. “What we try to do is we try to design algorithms that can help make principled decisions.”

“For example, in healthcare. If you want to ration the resources, it’s one of the toughest decisions that doctors have to make. So we try to lessen the burden for them by automating as much as possible. We designed an algorithm that allocates resources in a principled manner, and in a way that maximises the use of the resources to people who need them the most. The algorithm is fair in different respects; it respects priorities and respects ethical principles.”

A/Prof. Aziz says the use of algorithms in decision-making can ensure that processes are transparent, as well as verifiable. He believes that while keeping humans in the loop, AI will become increasingly important in helping organisations consider equity and diversity in the process of making fair and principled decisions.