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Leading with empathy to fight social injustice with Iva Gumnishka

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Image credit: Iva Gumnishka and Georgi Nenov via The Recursive
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In episode 5 of The Recursive podcast, we welcome the Bulgarian human rights activist turned social entrepreneur Iva Gumnishka. Only 27 years old, Iva is the founder of Humans in the Loop. This is a social enterprise aimed to fight social injustice by providing refugees, asylum-seekers, and migrants with marketable computer skills. 

Humans in the Loop is specialized in data annotation for the computer vision industry. Their employees perform manual labeling and verification to train machine learning models. The social enterprise collaborates with projects in the field of autonomous driving and flights, medical AI, Agri-tech, robotic vision, and others. 

Iva discovered her passion for helping people and pursuit for social change while studying Human Rights at Columbia University in New York. After graduating, she was determined to go back home and attempt to change the way migrants and refugees were perceived in Bulgaria. Since 2017, Humans in the Loop has impacted more than 500 people in Bulgaria, Turkey, Syria, and Iraq.

In her conversation with Georgi Nenov, Iva Gumnishka talks about her desire for independence that has led her on an entrepreneurship path. She opens up about her struggle to fund a social impact endeavor and what did it take to turn it into a sustainable business. 

Iva shares her vision of the role of humans in accelerating Machine Learning and AI processes and whether in ten years’ time society will still need human labor to help algorithms perform better.  

Leading with empathy, the social entrepreneur explains what are the qualities she values most in her professional relationships, and why she has a hard time saying “no”. 

You’ll also learn about how her partnership with her husband has guided her through all the milestone decisions for the business. 

Find out why Iva quitted belly dancing and what’s her secret to leading a more balanced life as a founder.  

Watch the previous episode to find out how serial entrepreneur and startup coach Hristo Neychev turned to Eastern philosophy in his pursuit of happiness and how daily meditation helps him understand and empathize with others.

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