Sam Altman’s return to the leadership of OpenAI five days after his dismissal was accompanied by a purge of the board of directors. Three people now sit on the company’s highest decision-making body, compared to the six that existed before. The three current advisors are men, and one of them is former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers, who in 2005 said that innate differences between the sexes explain why there are fewer women with successful careers in STEM careers (science, technology , engineering and mathematics, in its English acronym).
Some of the women who have been nominated to fill the three empty seats, such as artificial intelligence researcher Timnit Gebru, flatly refuse to join the company. “The idea seems repulsive to me. “I see my return to Google as more feasible than going to OpenAI,” has told Wired. Gebru was fired in 2020 from Google, where she co-led the AI Ethics team, shortly after she reported that the large language models the company was working on are heavily biased and harm minorities.
Before Altman’s return, he and OpenAI co-founders Greg Brockman and Ilya Sutskever sat on the board alongside Quora CEO Adam D’Angelo; AI security researcher Helen Toner; and Tasha McCauley, a robotics engineer who runs a 3D mapping startup. Of those six, only D’Angelo remains.
Initially, just after Altman’s dismissal was announced, the board appointed Mira Murati, until then the company’s technology director, as interim CEO. Her position was short-lived: two days later, Emmett Shear, former CEO of Twitch, was selected as the new helm of OpenAI. The position did not last long for Shear either: on Tuesday, five days after his dismissal, Altman returned to occupy it.
OpenAI’s management positions are once again dominated by men. For Margaret O’Mara, professor of history at the University of Washington and author of The Code: Silicon Valley and the Remaking of America, OpenAI’s new board reflects the power structure of Silicon Valley. “What this highlights is that there aren’t enough women in the mix to begin with,” he tells Wired. “AI is very unbalanced in terms of gender,” Sasha Luccioni, AI ethics researcher at HuggingFace, tells this American publication. “It’s not a very welcoming field for women.”
OpenAI plans to expand its advice shortly. According to Bloomberg, philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs, former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer and former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice were considered, but ultimately were not selected.
#artificial #intelligence #experts #dont #work #OpenAI