Neil Gaikwad, a doctoral student at the Space Enabled research group, has been chosen for the 2019 INK Fellowship Program for Emerging Innovators. Every year, INK identifies 20 young achievers who are redefining their fields of work or the world around them. This year INK selected its 20 fellows from over 900 candidates around the world.
Neil specializes in human-centered machine learning and social computing for sustainability. He develops human-machine collaboration algorithms, social computing systems, and mechanisms to study, model, and (re-) design socio-technical systems to balance economic, social, and environmental needs for sustainable development, analyzing large-scale datasets emerging from social processes, Earth remote sensing satellites, and socio-economic interactions.
Neil's current research focuses on the economic and social sustainability of markets under weak institutional enforcements and global food systems. He is developing human-centered machine learning for decoding the impact of social and the Earth’s physical processes on global food security and supply chain. Drawing upon this understanding, he is designing precision agriculture markets to enhance food security by helping marginalized farmers mitigate the impact of meteorological disasters and market breakdowns. This work investigates the complexity of cultures, colonial-histories, and economic contexts that impact the design, implementation, and performance of machine learning systems. He works with Professor Danielle Wood, the director of the Space Enabled research group.