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Zendy Announces New Version Releases of ZAIA – AI Assistant

United Arab Emirates, 13th March 2024 – AI-powered research library Zendy has announced the launch of a significant version release for its domain-specific Large Language Model (LMM), ZAIA (Zendy AI Assistant). 

Developed by Zendy’s data science team and initially launched in December 2023, ZAIA is designed to enhance the efficiency and effectiveness of research discovery and literature review. In this new version, a host of new features have been introduced to support researchers: 

  • Ask ZAIA: You can now ask specific questions to ZAIA on a paper level, giving you a new way to conduct in-depth analysis during literature review.
  • PDF Analysis: ZAIA can now analyse any PDF. Upload or link a research paper with sections, and ZAIA will extract, analyse, and summarise each section, including the abstract, introduction, methods, results, discussion, and references. 
  • Reference validation and verification: using techniques such as chain of verification, all references go through a validation and verification process to increase accuracy. 
  • Conversation and analysis history: once you log in, you can now see a complete history of all conversations with ZAIA and a history of PDFs analysed.
  • An enhanced fine-tuned model for increased accuracy.
  • ZAIA is also now accessible without registration. 

ZAIA is not a general-purpose language model. It is fine-tuned with Zendy’s own data sources, allowing it to support higher-level abstractions for research-specific use cases.

“ZAIA 0.1 takes us closer to our vision of creating an ecosystem of research-centric AI tools using the latest development methods that increase efficiency and reliability. The future of research is intertwined with the vast capabilities of AI, and we are committed to leveraging the best of AI to provide solutions to the pressing issues researchers face in research discovery,” said Zendy’s Chief Technology Officer, Rodrigo Pinto. 

“We have a core focus on increasing collaboration with publishers and data providers to navigate the increasing potential of AI. We look forward to extending the vast capabilities of our LLM and all our learnings to institutions, publishers, and organisations looking to streamline information discovery and retrieval using AI,” said Zendy Co-founder Kamran Kardan. 

Committed to helping foster an ecosystem of collaborative partnerships rooted in responsible AI practices, Zendy believes AI is important in fostering an equitable research and publishing ecosystem, but only with ethical guidelines. In response to the growing discussion around AI, Zendy recently released a list of AI imperatives to guide strategic development and the integration of AI technologies. 

To find out more about Zendy’s AI solutions, email

You can use ZAIA now on Zendy, visit

To read the Zendy AI Imperatives statement, click here. 

About Zendy

Zendy is a product of Knowledge E. Since its inception in 2019, Zendy has introduced over 500,000 users to a better way to research. Zendy’s intuitive AI-powered research library features millions of journals, articles, e-books, and more, allowing users to access unlimited content for an affordable monthly subscription. Zendy also offers a free open-access plan. 

Press contact: 

Monica Chinsami

Head of Marketing

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Decolonising and diversifying academia: Interview with Nahil Nasr, the Community Engagement Manager at F.O.R.M.

This January, the Forum of Open Reseach MENA hosted its first community development activity of 2024. The “Decolonising Open Science Symposium: Dismantling Global Heirarchies of Knowledge” addressed the influence of western prominence on knowledge distribution and research, highlighting how these ideologies and standards impact the Arab region.

Within the landscape of research, conversations and collaborations not only address inequalities but also break barriers to accessibility. In this blog, we interviewed Nahil Nassar who is the community engagement manager at the Forum of Open Research MENA. At the symposium, Nahil touched on the work that open science has in building stronger foundations for diverse research consumption and the biases that exist in the research landscape. We take a deeper dive into this conversation. 

  1. How does F.O.R.M. facilitate conversations around decolonising academia?

FORM is a community based organisation that centers its attention on the Arab region. That means prioritising Arab voices in academia to develop a regionally and culturally relevant model of Open Science to implement across the board.

While we do, of course, work with organisations that are based in the Global North, we try to be transparent when it comes to power dynamics, and recognise that we are only as strong as our community. 

  1. What role does open science play in escalating research outside western europe?

Open Science has the potential to really build an even playing field for researchers in the Global South because of its financially and digitally accessible model. In its best form, Open Science should allow researchers from the Global South to publish their work without limitations in cost or geography.

The problem is that Open Science publishing is not always functioning in its most optimum form, and things like APCs, metric frameworks, and language hierarchies (English being a dominant language across the research landscape) can still limit researchers in the same ways that traditional academic publishing models do.

  1. What are some biases that exist in the open science landscape?

A major bias that comes out of the Open Science landscape, especially when it comes to the Global South, is that Open Science research is bad research. There’s this assumption that if research isn’t published in perfect English, or focuses on a very niche subject that’s really only relevant to specific local contexts, then that means the research is either low quality or irrelevant. 

This is especially because of how research is prioritised in its value these days, and this is one of the many places where commodification enters the conversation as a major issue. Often times, major funding is only allocated to research that is deemed important by multinational corporations or prestigous research institutions in the Global North who sort of set the agenda of what is necessary to study and what isn’t – and these topics are usually prioritised based on the needs of these entities and their contexts, and completely ignore the localised needs of researchers in the Global South, who then don’t have access to that same funding. 

  1. Please explain how absolute objectivity is colonial ideology

This is a really interesting ideology to ponder on in decolonial discourse, because it seems very out there to say that there’s no such thing as objective truth, especially in a world that is run by scientific innovation. The idea of objectivity may seem to be clear and cut, but it goes back to the idea of intellectual dominance and colonialism. There was an ideological hierarchy set by colonial powers that placed their “truth” as the only “truth”, and took objectivity to mean that their truth is the only one with any substance or value. 

Many indigenous knowledge systems question this idea of absolute objectivity, because it is often rooted in inherently colonial, patriarchal, and violent understandings of nature, human experience, and society. I was first introduced to this philosophy through postcolonial gender theory, where researchers like Vandana Shiva questioned the very idea of scientific knowledge as we know it today as something that was forced on us as the only virtuous fact, but is sometimes actually the most harmful opinion. 

  1. What is the direct impact of colonisation on knowledge production today?

The impact of colonisation on knowledge production today can be found in a plethora of arenas. While colonisation as we once knew it is not nearly as prominent as it was in the 19th and 20th centuries, neo-imperial and neo-colonial ideologies are still very much strong holding the majority of the world’s systems. You can see legacies of it in how we think about scientific studies, methodologies, or even the metrics that we use to classify ‘good’ and ‘bad’ research. 

It informs how we think about credibility, and determines who gets to speak the loudest and whose voice gets silenced. It marginalises researchers who use indigenous knowledge methodologies (often rooted in intuition and connection to land and spirit) and prioritises the voices of liberal scientists who believe in objective fact rooted in numbers and rationality. 

Overall, it prioritises knowledge produced and disseminated by Western organisations and researchers that then have an impact on Western communities, and leave the global majority out of the conversation.

Watch the webinar here

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Webinar Recap: Research in the age of AI – Tools, Trends & Innovations

In a pivotal time where AI-powered tools shape efficiency in research processes, the world of academia is witnessing a significant transformation. This calls for a thorough discussion to define ethical AI usage in order to leverage the technology to improve the landscape of academia. 

We recently hosted a webinar to address and discuss the usage of AI in research. The webinar titled, “Research in the age of AI – Tools, Trends & Innovations” was moderated by Knowledge E’s chief academic officer, Dr. Emily Choynowski; and featured Zendy co-founder Kamran Kardan, Zendy Chief Technology Officer, Rodrigo Pinto, and Professor Leo Lo from the University of New Mexico.

Kamran Kardan – CEO of Knowledge E and Zendy

  • Driving an AI-powered research library [Zendy], ethical usage of AI is a core value. 
  • AI benefits and facilitates interdisciplinary research by allowing researchers to quickly learn about areas of study they are not specialised in, which creates productivity and efficiency in research processes. The technology also allows researchers to analyse citations and determine its relevance to their current projects. 
  • To tackle the ethical challenges AI presents, Zendy released an AI imperatives statement that guides the direction and intention behind developing AI products. 

Professor Leo Lo – Professor at University of New Mexico

  • Governments and businesses should invest in developing AI literacy in current education landscape
  • Conducted a survey in April 2023 amongst US academic library employees when Chat GPT was new and found that AI training was required, the employees presented a limited understanding of AI concepts, and that generative AI is not frequently used. 
  • Conducted follow-up surveys in December 2023 and found that there was a shift in attitude towards AI. Libraries had implemented AI solutions and applications while actively developing AI literacy initiatives. 
  • Developed AI competencies for librarians that tackles the comprehensive understanding, training and analysis required to confidently use AI to streamline library operations and transform services. 

Rodrigo Pinto – CTO of Zendy

  • Introduction to LLMs: a LLM (Large Language Model) is a type of AI designed to understand and generate human language. This technology has reasoning capabilities, understands questions and reads from external knowledge to respond with insights. 
  • Introduction to ZAIA – AI Assistant for research: ZAIA is an LLM developed by Zendy. It was designed to expedite the research process by analysing study results and providing credible responses backed by references.
  • Challenges of AI: bias, reliability, and data privacy. The mitigation strategies deployed by Zendy are safeguards and chains of verification and thought to minimise bias. 

As AI advances and creates efficiency across different industries, there has been a significant requirement to regulate the use of AI. In our efforts to make research accessible we launched a suite of AI tools on Zendy last year, to ensure ethical usage of our AI technology, we also established a comprehensive list of AI imperatives to guide the development and implementation of AI within our products. 

Discover academic research and easily consume papers with comprehensive AI tools now on Zendy