Isak Nti Asare innovates at the intersection of technology, political leadership, and policy
Isak Nti Asare was recently selected for the fourth annual IU College of Arts & Sciences ‘20 Under 40’ alumni list for his innovation in technology leadership. Nti Asare, a director at the Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies, is the associate director of the Indiana University Cybersecurity and Global Policy Program, senior associate at Oxford Insights, Fellow at the IU Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research, and co-founder of FairFrame: a startup using natural language processing to identify implicit bias in text. During his eclectic career, Nti Asare advised national and local governments on the strategic, cultural, and leadership opportunities from digital transformation to artificial intelligence (AI). He has co-authored national strategies, co-founded cross-governmental communities of practice, and co-authored the first city-led AI strategy in the United States, making him a prominent force in the field.
Nti Asare graduated from IU in 2011 with a Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics and Political Science, and with a concentration in African Studies. He minored in Swahili and Akan and is fluent in five languages.
“I think the Hamilton Lugar School is an interesting place because these sorts of degrees attract people who are often interested in global service,” says Nti Asare. “I think that’s the ethos of our school. That was with me as a student and I’m really proud to be an alum.”
Nti Asare wears many hats at the Hamilton Lugar School, thriving in the versatility of co-directing the cybersecurity programs. He also co-founded a startup for Artificial Intelligence to target implicit bias in text, working with cities, national governments, and technology. The Cybersecurity program is the fastest-growing major at HLS and the Spring 2022 semester is no exception.
“What I find most rewarding about my work in cybersecurity at the school is our students here at HLS. We have the best students! And secondly, the work that we’re doing. There are currently 400,000 unfilled cybersecurity jobs in the US alone. They’re not unfilled because of how competitive they are, they’re unfilled because we do not have enough people to fill them. That literally is putting the national security interest of our country at risk. It is very rewarding for me to be training the next generation of leaders who are going to enter the workforce and make a difference in the essential field of cybersecurity and global policy.”
As the co-author of Mexico’s AI strategy, Nti Asare mentions his proudest achievements being his AI ranked among the top in the country as well as the amazing work with HLS students and graduating as global leaders. He credits the HLS community and colleagues for his indelible mark on the university. HLS has provided professional growth, career development, and invaluable experience to give back to students. This year, Nti Asare is focused on helping others at HLS and beyond.
“Trees are only as good as the soil they’re planted in,” says Nti Asare. “Everything I am, and probably will be, is a direct result of my time at Indiana University. And it’s such a huge honor to return and give back to the community and environment that has given so much to me.”