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AI for Social Good: Decision aids for Countering Terrorism, Extinction, Homelessness

15 Nov
Thursday, 11/15/2018 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Computer Science Building, Room 150/151
The Futures Series
Speaker: Milind Tambe

Abstract:  With the maturing of AI and multiagent systems research, we have a tremendous opportunity to direct these advances towards addressing complex societal problems. I will focus on the problems of countering terrorism (for public safety and security), extinction (wildlife conservation), and homelessness (public health in low resource communities). One key multiagent systems challenge that cuts across these problem areas is how to effectively deploy limited intervention resources. In addressing this challenge, we provide advances in multiagent systems research, particularly in terms of computational game theory and agent modeling.  For public safety and security, I will introduce the use of Stackelberg security games model for effectively allocating limited security resources. These security games models are used by agencies such as the US Coast Guard and the US Federal Air Marshals Service to assist in the protection of ports, flights and other critical infrastructure. Second, I will illustrate the use of green security games to allocate limited resources in protecting endangered wildlife. By advancing adversary modeling in these games, we have helped removal of snares and arrests of poachers in national parks in Uganda.  Third, for public health, I will outline challenges of using limited resources for spreading health information in low resource communities, and algorithms based on games against nature.  These algorithms show significant improvements over traditional methods in harnessing social networks to spread HIV-related information among homeless youth. I will also point to directions for future work, illustrating the significant potential of AI for social good.

Bio: Milind Tambe is Helen N. and Emmett H. Jones Professor in Engineering at the University of Southern California(USC) and the Founding Co-Director of CAIS, the USC Center for Artificial Intelligence in Society, where his research focuses on advancing AI and multiagent systems research for Social Good. He is a fellow of AAAI (Association for Advancement of Artificial Intelligence) and ACM (Association of Computing Machinery) as well as recipient of the International Joint Conference on AI John McCarthy Award , ACM/SIGAI Autonomous Agents Research Award, Christopher Columbus Fellowship Foundation Homeland security award, INFORMS Wagner prize in Operations Research, Rist Prize of the Military Operations Research Society, IBM Faculty Award, Okawa foundation award, RoboCup scientific challenge award and other awards. Prof. Tambe has contributed several foundational papers in Artificial Intelligence in areas such as intelligent agents and computational game theory; these papers have received over a dozen best paper and influential paper awards at conferences such as AAMAS, IJCAI, IAAI and IVA. In addition, Prof. Tambe pioneering real-world deployments of security games has led him and his team to receive meritorious commendations from the US Coast Guard Commandant, LA Airport Police, and the US Federal Air Marshals Service.

Locally, Prof. Tambe has won the Orange County Engineering Council Outstanding Project Achievement Award, USC Associates award for creativity in research and USC Viterbi use-inspired research award. For his teaching and mentoring Prof. Tambe has received the USC Steven B. Sample Teaching and Mentoring award; to date 29 PhD students and 11 postdocs have completed their training under his mentorship. Prof. Tambe has also co-founded a company based on his research, Avata Intelligence , where he serves as the director of research. Prof. Tambe received his Ph.D. from the School of Computer Science at Carnegie Mellon University.

A reception for attendees will be held at 11:30 a.m. in CS 150 

Co-sponsored by the College of Information and Computer Sciences, the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences, and the Center for Smart and Connected Society, The Futures Series: Technological Shifts and Social Change explores how we can live and thrive in a world where social and technological transformation must be considered simultaneously and inseparably

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