Data science

Top 10 AI Thought Leaders and Influencers to Follow in 2021

Here’s a list of our favorite AI thought leaders and influencers you can follow in 2021
Artificial intelligence is growing at an exponential rate. Over the years, disruptive technologies like big data analytics, machine learning, and such have been transforming businesses. AI has provided the much-needed time to be more productive and help complete tasks, which were earlier impossible for humans to complete single-handedly, starting from boosting business growth to taking care of employees’ benefits. Here is a list of the top 10 AI thought leaders and influencers you can follow in 2021 who might help you stay abreast of the latest AI developments and innovations.


1. Andrew Ng
Andrew is a well-known computer scientist and technology entrepreneur focusing on machine learning and AI and co-founded Coursera. He was also the co-founder and head of Google Brain and was the former chief scientist at Baidu. He is one of the most influential ML scholars globally. Over 3.2 million students have taken his ‘machine learning’ course on Coursera, and over 40,000 students have studied his ‘AI for Everyone’ course. He was listed as one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in 2012 and Fast Company’s Most Creative People in 2014.


2. Maria Luciana Axente
Maria is a globally recognized AI ethics expert currently based in the UK. She is currently serving at PwC UK, where she is setting up an AI Centre of Excellence, as per the company’s AI strategy and the development of the AI toolkit. She is an advisory board member of the UNICEF AI for children program. Axente was added to the list of 30 European AI experts to follow. in 2019 and 2020, she was also included in the 100+ Brilliant Women in AI and Ethics list.


3. Andy Fitze 
He is the Founder of the global AI hub, Swiss Cognitive, and is also the President of the Swiss IT Leadership Forum. In 2015, he was awarded the Swiss CIO Award as the Best IT Manager in Switzerland. In 2020, he was named as one of the “Top 100 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers 2020” and in 2021, he also received the award “One of the 100 Most Influential People in AI Worldwide.”


4. Cassie Kozyrkov
Cassie is a data scientist and statistician. She founded the department of decision intelligence at Google and serves as its Chief Decision Scientist. She is also a technology evangelist and is known as the data science thought leader. She has been invited as a keynote speaker in the top technology summits. She also publishes her own blogs, and her writings are featured on Harvard Business Review and Forbes.


5. Nazareen Ebrahim
Nazareen Ebrahim is the Founder, CEO, and AI Ethics Officer at Socially Acceptable-South Africa. She is also the Founder and CEO of Naz Consulting where she provides face-to-face training and entrepreneurial mentorship. She has a strong broadcast portfolio of producing and presenting television and radio shows.


6. Moustapha Cissé
He is the founder and director of the African Master of Machine Intelligence (AMMI) at the African Institute of Mathematical Sciences. He is also a research scientist at Google and head of the Google AI center in Accra, Ghana. He was previously a research scientist at Facebook AI Research.


7. Bernard Marr
Marr is an internationally best-selling author, popular keynote speaker, a futurist, and a strategic business and technology advisor to governments and private companies. He helps organizations improve their business performances and data more intelligently. He also advises on the implications of new technologies such as artificial intelligence, big data, blockchain, and IoT.


8. Ronald Van Loon 
Ronald is the Director of Advertisement and also the advisory board member and the course advisor at Simplilearn. He is a public speaker and has given speeches for significant AI, big data, IoT, and data science events. He has a channel on YouTube where he extensively talks about artificial intelligence, machine learning, and related technologies. He is recognized as the top 10 Global Influencer for different disruptive technologies.


9. Kirk Borne
Kirk is a Principal Data Scientist and Data Science Fellow and an Executive Advisor at Booz Allen Hamilton. He is also a professor of Astrophysics and Computational Science at the George Mason University of Physics, Astronomy, and Computational Sciences. For over 20 years, he has supported NASA projects with his expertise and is named among the top social influencers for big data, AI, and data science.


10. Shailendra Kumar
He is the Vice President and the Chief Evangelist of SAP and an advisory board member at the Aegis School of Business, data science, cybersecurity, and telecommunications. He has great experience in AI, machine learning, advanced analytics, and data science.

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