Qatar Computing Research Institute
The Qatar Computing Research Institute (QCRI) is a global leader of computing research in identified areas that bring positive impact to the lives of citizens and society. It conducts innovative, multidisciplinary applied computing research addressing national priorities that enhance the quality of life for citizens, enables broader scientific discoveries and makes local businesses more competitive globally.
Priorities as a partner of the Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data
QCRI performs cutting edge research on how to use non-traditional data sources and computational methods to support development and humanitarian organizations. In particular, QCRI is developing methods to analyze social media data to monitor digital gender gaps (SDG 5) and to map poverty and deprivation (SDG 1). Other topics that cut across several SDGs include monitoring international migration and real-time mapping of humanitarian crises. Data sources drawn from include advertising data from Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google as well as both text and images posted on Twitter.
- Digital Gender Gaps -- With support by Data2X and in collaboration with the University of Oxford, we develop methods to fill data gaps related to gender gaps in internet usage, access to mobile phones, and digital skills. In our work, we observe that gender gaps in the usage of services such as Facebook or Google are strong predictors for other types of digital gender gaps.
- Mapping Poverty and Deprivation -- Real-time maps of poverty and deprivation are helpful to implement more targeted interventions. In our work we build on existing efforts using satellite imagery and mobile phone data to show that information on the device types, such as Android vs. iOS, used to access online social networks are powerful signals to map poverty.
- Monitoring International Migration: Traditional data sources for migration have a number of short-comings, including considerable delays limiting their use for real-time monitoring. Our research shows that when biases are appropriately corrected social media can help to augment existing data sources, improving estimates of migration.
- Real-Time Crisis Mapping: During a sudden humanitarian crisis, e.g. caused by an earthquake or a hurricane, information is lacking most exactly when it is most needed: during the first hours and days of the crisis. We have developed Artificial Intelligence for Digital Response (AIDR) which uses text and images posted on Twitter for situational awareness during the early phase of a disaster.
In the spirit of partnerships for the goals (SDG 17), QCRI is committed to using Artificial Intelligence for good and invites international development and humanitarian organizations to get in touch.