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15 ADB Initiatives Using Artificial Intelligence in Asia and Pacific

By Wayan Vota on June 12, 2024

ai adb asia pacific report

In the past years, Asian Development Bank’s (ADB) role has evolved from being a financing partner to also serving as a knowledge bank that enables the development of developing member countries (DMCs). Knowledge is the ground on which innovation stands, and innovation, in turn, can accelerate economic growth and social progress, especially in the context of knowledge as a public good.

Artificial intelligence, particularly generative AI, while not a silver bullet, can be a powerful tool that would help put us on the right path to address these growing challenges. It has the potential to serve as a key driver of growth and innovation. However, this can only be fully realized if sufficient investments are made not only to effectively harness the technology but also to empower teams to become competent in responsibly leveraging AI to augment decisions and enhance productivity and efficiency.

After all, ADB’s digital transformation does not just refer to the hardware and software; the capacity of its personnel dictates the speed at which technology will be adopted by the bank.

Artificial Intelligence at ADB

The ADB is exploring ways in which AI can be leveraged to redefine the way it works, and, more importantly, craft solutions that would help address the increasingly multifaceted issues faced by Asia and the Pacific, particularly the poorest and most vulnerable communities in the region.

ADB is pursuing and nurturing partnerships with industry leaders and innovative startups to achieve the goal of responsible AI development, allowing us early access to test new tools and technologies to see whether they are compatible with ADB’s systems and processes.

Collaboration also offers additional benefits in the context of AI innovations: by leveraging the collective intelligence and experience of experts from various fields and backgrounds, it can accelerate progress. It can also help mitigate biases and ethical issues in AI development.

ADB Initiatives Using AI

Artificial Intelligence in Action: Selected ADB Initiatives in Asia and the Pacific was developed by Marc Lepage, principal information technology specialist for technology innovation at the Information Technology Department of the ADB. He conceptualized and guided the development of this knowledge product to cover:

  1. Concept Paper Problem Tree Generator
  2. Digital Assistant for Project Administration Instructions
  3. Digital Twins for Smart Road Construction
  4. Chatbots as Lifelines for Domestic Violence Survivors
  5. Driving Safe Transportation Using Digital Solutions
  6. Restoring Public Confidence on Safe Travels
  7. Predictive Model for Resettlement Outcomes
  8. Robo-Advisor for Information Dissemination
  9. Economic Monitoring Using Alternative Data Sources
  10. Using Automatic Identification Systems for Maritime Activities
  11. Nowcasting the Economic Impact of COVID-19
  12. Earth Observation Data to Predict Economic Activities
  13. Technical Assistance Messaging Intelligence
  14. MyADB Recruitment Intelligence
  15. Intelligent Integrity Due Diligence Platform

Underlining the need to invest in technology and training, it details how ADB is already using AI and provides links to expert blogs on topics including how generative AI can help bolster financial inclusion and map poverty, it considers both the risks and benefits of using the technology in development.

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Written by
Wayan Vota co-founded ICTworks. He also co-founded Technology Salon, MERL Tech, ICTforAg, ICT4Djobs, ICT4Drinks, JadedAid, Kurante, OLPC News and a few other things. Opinions expressed here are his own and do not reflect the position of his employer, any of its entities, or any ICTWorks sponsor.
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One Comment to “15 ADB Initiatives Using Artificial Intelligence in Asia and Pacific”

  1. Philippe Chabot says:

    Chatbot as a lifeline for domestic violence survivors. Really? Do we think that is going to work? Do we think this will work better than speaking to an actual person? Sign me up for the backlash to all of this inanity.