Today across 51 different countries it is estimated that as many as 124 million people may be at risk of crisis level food shortages but this is perhaps nothing new as similar numbers have faced similar crisis levels in the past however, unlike in the past, today those people may have a chance that help is in place prior to or as they need it and this is thanks to Artificial Intelligence (AI).
In the past food shortages have been able to be predicted thanks to surveys and other time consuming and expensive processes resulting in the shortages being assessed too late for practical and meaningful help to be in place to avoid or at least alleviate the worst scenarios. At last realizing this, the UN and other international relief agencies are working on ways to assess the potential problems earlier and also on how to make quicker responses to those problems and as with many other things today, AI is thought to be able to help.
Led by the World Bank an assortment of different experts are now working together to create both better forecasting of famines and also faster responses to them. Among these experts are now AI specialists from leading AI developers like Google, Amazon and Microsoft and it are these experts which is hoped will one day, in the near future, bring relief to those millions of people would otherwise face life taking starvation levels.
Although AI is already known to be able to find results from surveys quicker than humans, it is not just that which AI is hoped to be able to help with as it is also hoped that it can more easily and efficiently enable aid agencies and other relief management organizations to unite in making quicker responses to those survey results.
When talking about relief for famines we have to realize that relief consists of several stages and as is usually the case, the first of these stages is its financing. After that though comes locating adequate food supplies, purchasing those food supplies and then transporting them to where they are most needed and all of these stages take time to realize, time which the starving do not have.
Although AI is perhaps best known for its ability to predict given situations more swiftly, as it is being used more and more in the sectors of finance, agriculture and foods plus the transportation industries it is envisaged that AI will be able to also link all of these different aspects more quickly and efficiently whenever it predicts potential famines.
It is therefore hoped that AI will not only predict future famines but will also play a major role in either preventing them or at least greatly reducing the effects of them. This in effect will mean that AI will be helping to save lives which may otherwise have been lost due to famine and many of those people whose lives it saves, may not even be aware of its existence.Published: Mar 12,2019 04:25:00 PM IST