World first conference agenda focuses on AI’s positive potential for the worlds of work and business – 15 Sept 2016

Programme for the first Social Robotics & AI conference is published

The programme for the first Social Robotics & AI conference delivers on its promise to highlight the positive impact of emerging technologies on the worlds of work and business.

The conference’s busy schedule of discussions, demonstrations, debates and presentations will investigate how artificial intelligence can improve UK business competitiveness by boosting productivity, powering innovation and augmenting the capabilities of the human workforce.  The aim, says conference chairman Anton Fishman, is “to encourage collaboration between scientists, academics, business leaders and the builders of human capital.  By doing so we hope to ensure UK plc gets the best possible advantage from the AI-driven technology revolution that’s gathering pace worldwide.”

Amongst the high-profile line-up of speakers and contributors are:

  • Gary Kasparov, the chess champion that battled IBM’s Deep Blue, who demonstrates how artificial intelligence can liberate human creativity.
  • Tech philosopher Tom Chatfield who asks, can smart machines make us more human?
  • Stewart Bromley, CTO of Atom Bank, describes how he’s using AI to deliver ‘telepathic banking’ to UK consumers.
  • Rod Willmott, Innovation Director at LV= Insurance describes the accelerated innovation processes that are bringing AI to the heart of this leading insurer.
  • Virginie Vast, Head of Cognitive Procurement and Digital Sourcing for Vodafone Procurement Company, reveals how AI is re-creating the supply chain.
  • Nicola Millard, BT futurologist, investigates the impact of AI on customer experience.
  • Prof Alan Winfield of Bristol Robotics Laboratory outlines a governance framework for AI in business.
  • Peter Waggett and Paul Chong of IBM showcase the capabilities of WATSON and describe new innovations in neuromorphic computing.
  • Gorkan Ahmetoglu, Lecturer in Business Psychology at University College London, investigates the role of people in an AI-triggered entrepreneurial revolution
  • Prof Nigel Crook, Head of Computing and Communication Technologies at Oxford Brookes University describes the future of human-robot collaboration

Also on the agenda:

  • AI-in-Action: demonstrations of AI and robotics applications. An opportunity to meet the innovators, the developers, the creators and their creations.
  • AI-Upstarts: A leading UK venture capitalist showcases three of the brightest new AI businesses and gives sound advice on backing winners and working with them.

The full Social Robotics & AI programme can be downloaded from www.socialroboticsai.com.

Social Robotics & AI is held on 15 September in association with the Association for Business Psychology and hosted by Oxford Brookes University. Guests are invited to arrive the day before for an evening reception and the launch of AI-in-Action.  It is supported by commercial partners including the global IT services business, HCL, and the business services group, Ember.  Kalyan Kumar, Executive VP, CTO-CIO and Digital of HCL says; “The combination of AI and automation has the power to transform business efficiency, employee productivity, customer experience and business agility. We’re partnering with Social Robotics & AI because it promises to get beyond the rhetoric and nervousness so often associated with AI and focus on positive partnership between humans and machines.”

NOTES FOR EDITORS

About the Association of Business Psychology

The Association for Business Psychology (ABP) was established in 2000 to help its members to improve relationships between people and the organisations they work in, based on evidence-based understanding of human behaviour.  Its 700 strong membership includes practicing business psychologists, students and academics active in this field, HR, learning, resourcing and operational design practitioners as well as executive managers with an interest in how psychology shapes them and their ability to lead and engage their people.

http://www.theabp.org.uk

 

About Oxford Brookes University

Oxford Brookes University is a premier learning and teaching institution with an outstanding research record and tradition of academic excellence.  Its Department of Computing and Communications Technologies has a strong research presence at home and abroad; 75% of its research – including that on AI and social robotics – is internationally recognised and 8% acknowledged to be world leading. Key research themes include enabling robots to see and understand the world around them (Computer Vision), improving the way in which humans interact with robots (Human-robot Interaction and Collaboration), enabling robots to learn about themselves and their environment (Machine Learning) and developing biologically inspired robots. There is an emphasis on developing robots that are socially aware and emotionally intelligent enabling them to show empathy and build trust with their human collaborators.

http://www.brookes.ac.uk

For more information

Commercial enquiries:                                                       Media Enquiries:

Chris Wood                                                                             Annie Garthwaite

T: 44 (0) 7775 604011                                                           T:  44 (0)1746 764909

E: chris@cbm.media                                                            E:  annie@anniegarthwaite.com

 

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Engaging learners in a digitally connected age

A Panel Discussion chaired by Nicola Strong

At the recent Employee Engagement Summit in London in April 2016, I asked three learning innovators in employee engagement to debate with the audience.

My panellists included:

  • Rory Lawson (Kineo) Solutions Consultant focused on digital and blended learning;
  • Perry Timms (CIPD, Zoo Media) our resident HR Futurist who wants a balance between established learning practices and disruptive forward thinking
  • Iain Trundle (Barclays) who has taken a fresh look at connecting 135,000 employees to 170 learning programmes in over 45 countries. 

We decided to meet up before the event and agree some questions that we thought were worthy of debate:  

  1. Which digital trends are driving engagement in workplace learning in your organisations?
  2. In engaging learners, how do we ensure a balance between established learning practices and disruptive forward thinking?
  3. How do you engage, connect and deliver learning to a global workforce?

Delightfully, the audience brought new thinking to our dialogue and offered issues and ideas. Perry Timms Blog post energetically highlights some of the key thinking that came from the debate. And offers further thinking to take this forward. 

 

Perry Timms

 PT profile

Described by CIPD CEO Peter Cheese as “The HR Futurist”, he is a social HR Practitioner; voted a top 10 blogger in International and UK magazines.  Perry is Adviser to the CIPD on Social Media & Engagement, built the Institute’s first MOOC “Working Digitally: Social Media and HR” and was a Guide for the CIPD/MiX HR Hackathon.

Perry runs his own enterprise – PTHR  – alongside that of being Director – People & Learning at fast-growing creative digital agency Media Zoo. Perry is aiming to transform learning & work through use of social technologies; innovation as usual; more soulful leadership; and being an always-on learner for a range of clients in all sectors.

Perry is an international and TEDx speaker on HR and the future of work, authored the e-book “HR 2025” and writes for a range of online HR and Work publications and journals and at the end of 2015 was asked to join IBM’s Future of Work programme.

 

Iain Trundle

 Iain Trundle

Group Head of Learning Channels, Barclays

Iain has successfully delivered many platforms, tools and programmes, but considers the latest  he’s been working on at Barclays the most exciting initiative yet.

It’s transforming the way learning is approached within Barclays through the use of a solution that sparks interest and curiosity of employees, a multi-channel, resource-based approach to learning.

 

Rory Lawson

Rory Lawson

Account Director, City & Guilds Kineo

Rory has a passion for design and technology, delivering highly creative design concepts and solutions that are blended or purely digital, and provides consultancy to some of the world’s leading brands. He has a proven ability to manage and drive large scale, international, digital learning projects, from Needs Analysis through to media production to delivery and assessment of high impact learning.

Additional sensory experience

We have five senses. Or do we? It is highly likely that we have additional senses that we have not consciously been aware of in our normal lives. David Eagleman, a neuroscientist, has gone much further than just asking the question. He has made things, gadgets, that allow us to check what new sensory data we can access and train the brain to use. For example, a vest that provides vibrations that reflect the emotional content of Twitter.

Take a look at his most recent TED Talk – expand your UMWELT!

Getting an audio meeting to work: walking over the bridge

One thing that has really struck me about running audio meetings is how easy it is for a meeting to descend into polite confusion. There are, indeed, some subtle changes that can either make or break a meeting held in this environment.

An obvious observation is to underestimate the time needed for the technology, Internet, routers, security to complete all their connecting processes. Downloading, uploading, handshaking, firewall checking will all add to the time.

On the other hand, it stuck me that it could be similar to walking over a bridge.

When I was a student in London the daily question was to decide what route I would take between my student digs and the lecture theatre. I had several options. But there was one defining landmark that was very important. It was the River Thames. Crossing this majestic river was like passing from one world to another. A way of clearing the world of the personal and focusing or re-adjusting my mind to my study. I liked standing on the bridge and enjoying the flowing stillness in-between. Hovering in a sort of fertile void.

I took this thinking into my workplace and, while walking to a meeting room, I would consider the river between my desk (conveniently secured by my in-tray) and the new discussion planned for the meeting (image of clouds is irresistible). The journey giving me time to pause in my mind… unless I was late!

Now, with the immediacy of technology, what can I do to keep a pause, some stillness, between all this on-line activity?  Yes, it occurred to me that I could build in some time to reflect as part of my preparation for a meeting. But, I rather like the idea that technology’s busyness gives me time to walk over the bridge.

Time taken to pause, even if it is a few seconds, can be valuable. It could be the difference between a good idea and a great idea in your next meeting.