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Qualcomm AI Research: Advancing Diversity and Empowering Women in AI with WAI Partnership



In today's rapidly evolving technological landscape, artificial intelligence (AI) has emerged as a transformative force, driving innovation and reshaping industries across the globe. At the forefront of this revolution stands Qualcomm AI Research, an industry leader committed to making AI's core capabilities ubiquitous across devices. But Qualcomm's contributions go beyond technological breakthroughs. With a deep-rooted commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), they have partnered with Women in AI (WAI) to close the gender gap and promote diversity within the tech world.


Welcome to an insightful conversation that delves into the world of cutting-edge technology, diversity, and empowerment. In this interview, we have the privilege of sitting down with Armina Stepan, the Marketing Communications Lead at Qualcomm Technologies Netherlands, a proud partner of Women in AI (WAI). Join us as we gain valuable insights into Qualcomm's visionary endeavors, their commitment to fostering diversity, and their partnership with WAI to empower women in the realm of AI and technology.


As our Partner we’d like to know you better. How do you feel about AI? What do you do in the AI space?

At Qualcomm AI Research, we are advancing AI to make its core capabilities – perception, reasoning, and action – ubiquitous across devices. Our mission is to make breakthroughs in fundamental AI research and scale them across industries. By bringing together some of the best minds in the field, we’re pushing the boundaries of what’s possible and shaping the future of AI.


Our AI research areas span from foundational machine learning to applied AI


Our AI teams are collaborating across our offices in San Diego, Toronto, Amsterdam, Seoul, and more, making power-efficient on-device AI a reality. On-device AI implementation helps to increase user privacy, address security preferences, enhance applications reliability and enable personalization at a significantly lower cost for developers compared to the sole use of cloud-based AI implementation and services.


For more details on our AI developments and published papers at key conferences, see our dedicated page. For AI tools open-sourced by our Qualcomm Innovation Center, check out our Github page.


As our Partner, how do you feel about Equity, Diversity and Inclusion? How do you apply Equity, Diversity and Inclusion?

We further innovation and accelerate progress by fostering a diverse workforce. Our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Policy highlights our commitment to cultivate innovators who bring varying backgrounds, ideas, and points of views. We are committed to building a pipeline of diverse talent.


Qualcomm is present at many diversity conferences such as European Women in Technology and Women in ML (co-located with NeurIPS) and partners with many universities and organizations dedicated to building diversity and creating more opportunities for professional development and engagement. We proudly focus on developing leaders and shaping future talent pools to help us meet the needs of our customers worldwide.


To find out more about the breadth of projects that we run and support worldwide, check out our corporate responsibility vision and results. For more details on our diversity plans and meaningful policies, check out this page.


How do you see your partnership with WAI will help us with our cause (to close the gender gap)?

We believe that it will help connect, train, empower women in STEM and business and also help democratize AI, helping minorities in tech to unlock the power of AI in their own line of business.


Why did you choose the partnership with WAI? What is your overall impression of WAI?

We chose to work with WAI because of your genuine commitment to diversity, the innovative approach to educating women in STEM, bringing more employability and fostering entrepreneurship to women in this space, both from technical backgrounds and less technical.


What has your experience with Women in AI been like up to now?

The experience at the Women in AI Gala Netherlands was undeniably positive and uplifting. We were delighted to sponsor the Researcher of the Year award and to present it to Rianne van den Berg, for her innovative work at the intersection of deep learning, chemistry, and physics. Equally, the launch of the WAI Metaverse introduced a fresh wave of innovation. We look forward to exploring more ways to meaningfully engage with the Women in AI community.


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