21 April 2020, 15:00 (UTC +1), Virtual Event
Shift AI
Bringing the brightest minds together online
Due to the coronavirus, Shift AI will be held online and will be the meeting place for hundreds of professionals eager to propel the progress of AI and discuss the newest technologies in data mining, machine learning and neural networks.
What is Shift AI all about
We’re bringing some of the most prominent names in the world and putting them under the spotlight to speak their minds about the future of AI. You’ll also be able to join the discussion, ask them questions and network with other attendees online.
Who is connecting?
Shift AI is gathering representatives from the whole AI sector, no matter their size or stage - these are just some of them.
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Our speakers will still have you thinking long after the conference has ended.
Danny Lange
Danny Lange
Vice President of AI and Machine Learning at Unity Technologies
Unity Technologies, Inc.

Dr. Danny Lange is VP of AI and Machine Learning at Unity Technologies. As VP of AI and Machine Learning, Danny leads Unity’s efforts around AI (Artificial Intelligence) and Machine Learning. He joined from Uber, where he was Head of Machine Learning. At Uber, Danny led the efforts to build the world’s most versatile Machine Learning platform to support Uber’s hyper growth. Previously, Danny was General Manager of Amazon Machine Learning -- an AWS product that offers Machine Learning as a Cloud Service. Before that, he was Principal Development Manager at Microsoft where he led a product team focused on large-scale Machine Learning for Big Data. Danny spent eight years on Speech Recognition Systems, first as CTO of General Magic, Inc., then through his work on General Motors OnStar Virtual Advisor, one of the largest deployments of an intelligent personal assistant until Siri. Danny started his career as a Computer Scientist at IBM Research. Danny holds MS and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the Technical University of Denmark. He is a member of ACM and IEEE Computer Society and has several patents to his credit.

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Ashley Casovan
Ashley Casovan
Executive Director at AI Global
AI Global

Ashley is an engaged and innovative leader who has always had a deep interest in advancing the public good. Recently leaving her long-standing career in the public service where she was last Director of Data and Digital for the Government of Canada, she has now taken on the role of Executive Director of AI Global, a non-profit dedicated to creating practical tools to ensure the responsible use of AI. Throughout her career she has worked at the intersection of innovative technology and data, and its impact on providing better information and services.

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Mark Weber
Mark Weber
Strategy & Operations Lead at MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab

Mark Weber is an applied researcher and Strategy & Operations Lead at the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab, a $250 million partnership funding over 200 scientists making fundamental breakthroughs in AI. Through the lab’s corporate membership program, which he runs, Mark works closely with global leaders across multiple sectors on the creative challenge of bridging fundamental science to real-world impact. Mark’s current applied research includes neuro-symbolic generative modeling for construction monitoring, graph deep learning for anti-money laundering, and supply chain demand forecasting. Mark also oversees strategic engagements with IDEO and the International Monetary Fund. Prior to IBM Research, Mark was a graduate researcher at the MIT Media Lab and a fellow at the MIT Legatum Center for Development & Entrepreneurship while he earned his M.B.A in finance from MIT Sloan. There he led the development of an open-source protocol called b_verify for verifiable records in supply chain finance. Before his foray into technology, Mark spent the first chapters of his career focused on political economy and development. He produced three documentary films on these subjects, most notably the critically acclaimed film Poverty, Inc. In his personal time, he is an avid reader and an ultramarathon trail runner. Learn more at www.markrweber.com and follow Mark at @markrweber.

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Kairan Quazi
Kairan Quazi
AI Research Mentee at Intel

Kairan Quazi is an AI Summer Research Mentee at Intel Labs’ Anticipatory Computing Lab and a full-time undergraduate college student in the San Francisco Bay Area, California. He started his undergraduate studies in Mathematics and Computer Science at the age of 9. Kairan expects to enter his junior (third) year of undergraduate studies in August 2020 at the age of 11. To date, Kairan has earned five certifications in Deep Learning, four certifications in advanced Python programming, and maintains proficiency in 19 programming languages and frameworks. Kairan has been recognized by the prestigious Davidson Institute Young Scholars Program and the Johns Hopkins Study of Exceptional Talent. He has been featured as a guest writer in HuffPost and MIT Technology Review. He has been featured in numerous television and print media interviews as well as viral documentaries released by HuffPost, Voice of America, and 60 Seconds Documentary. Kairan is an extroverted learner with a passion for politics, current events, and all things STEM. He also enjoys reading, video-gaming, collecting Pokémon cards, traveling, and making friends.

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Peter Grabowski
Peter Grabowski
Manager of the Enterprise Machine Learning at Google

Peter Grabowski is a longtime Googler and former Nest employee. He's currently the manager of the Enterprise Machine Learning team in Austin. Previously, he managed a data engineering team at Nest and helped build the Assistant for Kids team at Google. Outside of Google, he teaches machine learning as part of UC Berkeley's Master's in Data Science, and is a managing partner of PXN Residential, LLC.

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Aisling Fogarty
Aisling Fogarty
Senior Recruiter at nineDots

Aisling is a Senior Recruiter at nineDots.io, with almost 6 years of recruitment experience across Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

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Ishan Jain
Ishan Jain
Cloud Solutions Architect - Data & AI at Microsoft

Ishan Jain is a passionate software developer, solution architect and Open Source advocate. Ishan has been working with cloud and Azure for last 6 years. As Cloud Solutions Architect, he helps customers to embrace the cloud to its full potential. The journey usually starts with simple lift-and-shift, but it is his task to show the customers what more can be achieved with the cloud. Today his is focusing more on the AI and Automation aspects of Azure. As Open Source Advocate, he helps customers and Microsoft community at large to embrace the new Open Source paradigms.

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Slater Victoroff
Slater Victoroff
CTO at Indico Data
Indico Data

Slater Victoroff is the Founder and CTO of indico data solutions, an Enterprise AI solution for unstructured content with an emphasis on text and NLP. He has been building machine learning solutions for startups, governments, and Fortune 100 companies for the past 5 years and is a frequent speaker at AI conferences.

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Kieran Towey
Kieran Towey
Data Scientist and Analytics lead at KPMG

Kieran has over 20 years’ experience working as a Data Scientist, delivering data powered solutions to large global and domestic clients. Kieran has a mathematics and statistics academic background and excels in building and growing data, analytics and artificial intelligence capability, including specialist teams and technology solutions. Kieran is a Thought Leader in the field of analytics and has travelled the world, working with clients across all industries and speaking at technology, analytics and AI conferences. Kieran’s expertise lies in designing and delivering data powered solutions that maximise the client value from investments in data and analytics technology, with particular domain expertise in Financial Services.

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Sebastian Weyer
Sebastian Weyer
Co-founder & CEO at Statice

Sebastian is a Co-founder & CEO at Statice, a Berlin-based data anonymization company. Statice enables companies to undertake safe and efficient data science, without compromising the security or privacy of consumer data. Leading corporates from the finance, insurance, healthcare and automotive fields leverage Statice technology to safely build value with data assets. Prior to founding Statice, Sebastian developed ventures in IoT, Data Science and Big Data at WATTx, a corporate company builder. Sebastian holds a masters degree from the Rotterdam School of Management, and is a member of the Working Group on Data Privacy of the German Initiative for Artificial Intelligence. He has always been passionate about data-driven innovation that creates value for people and their businesses. He believes in a data-driven present and future, and is sure that we can combine data-based value creation with ethical business practices.

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Slaven Misak
Slaven Misak
CEO at Bonsai.tech

Slaven is the CEO and co-founder of bonsai.tech – a small AI startup that uses AI to learn from people augmenting their abilities in everyday work and finding new ways to get rid of boring jobs.

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Boris Cergol
Boris Cergol
Head of AI at Comtrade Digital Services
Comtrade Digital Services

Boris is Head of AI at Comtrade Digital Services, a provider of software engineering services and solutions. He is responsible for overseeing the delivery of AI projects and the company's AI-related R&D activities. He is also managing the AI Collective, Comtrade Digital Services' partnership network of academic institutions and start-up companies. Prior to joining Comtrade, he was the CEO and co-founder of Ektimo, an AI consulting and implementation company and held various research positions in both academia and industry. He has extensive experience working with businesses who were early adopters of AI across various industries - including finance, insurance, technology, retail, manufacturing and energy. Boris holds a bachelor's degree in Theoretical Mathematics and a PhD in Mathematical Statistics, both from the University of Ljubljana.

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Navdeep Sharma
Navdeep Sharma
Technology Architect Principal - Data & AI at Accenture The Dock
Accenture The Dock

Navdeep is currently working as Data & AI Architect at Accenture’s R&D center, with a passion for designing forward-thinking solutions and bringing Artificial Intelligence to individuals. He has extensive experience in implementing the Machine learning lifecycle through production and manage aspects such as data pipeline, scaling, automation, and Governance

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Ehsan Yousefzadeh
Ehsan Yousefzadeh
Artificial Intelligence at AIG Investments

Ehsan is the Product Manager for the Investments AI team, a centralized Artificial Intelligence team within AIG. He joined AIG in April 2019 and currently leads a product team of machine learning scientists, natural language processing scientists, data engineers, and developers to create and deliver AI products (models and applications) to be used within the investment team. Prior to AIG, Ehsan co-founded an electronic trading startup that used AI to provide prices within the corporate bond markets and has previously worked on the fixed income credit desks at Goldman Sachs and BNP Paribas since 2007. Ehsan holds his Masters in Data Science from UC Berkeley.

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Bilal Khan
Bilal Khan
Master of Ceremony at Shift
Shift Conference

Born and raised in NW London of mixed-ethnic background, following an MA in Theology from the University of Cambridge Bilal moved into a career in Youth Engagement, public speaking and facilitation and has delivered hundreds of speeches and workshops around social justice, enterprise and diversity and inclusion as a result. Currently working as a freelance facilitator, infrequent radio Breakfast Show Host and host of Over The Bridge Podcast, Bilal spends much of his time engaging audiences in critical thinking to understand the root causes of oppression and has subsequently written articles for the BBC . As a host, Bilal has had the privilege to work in multiple countries around the world with clients in both charitable and corporate sector industries and has spoken in venues such as the SSE Arena Wembley.

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Ivan Brezak Brkan
Ivan Brezak Brkan
Chief Editor and Founder at Netokracija

Ivan is the founder and editor-in-chief of Netokracija, the ‘Techcrunch of the Balkans’ which he founded at the age of 22. Forbes has called him “The internet aristocrat” in its special “Generation 2013” issue. Ivan has helped brands like Mastercard, A1, Microsoft and Raiffeisen bank with content marketing and employer branding.

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Ivan Burazin
Ivan Burazin
CEO at Shift
Shift Conference

Ivan is the founder of the Shift Conference. Alongside this he co-founded Codeanywhere, the first cross platform Cloud IDE, which now has over a million users worldwide.

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Patrick Desjardins
Senior Software Engineer at Netflix
"Shift Conference was a well-organized event, with broad range of topics."
Mike Bucher
Editor at Large at TechCrunch
"It's exciting to me when an event like Shift Split happens because it is usually the first sign that a new startup ecosystem is forming. To me I find that fascinating, because I know that in time we will see great tech products, Startups and entrepreneurs come from it. Plus, events like this are a key indicator to the press and investors that they will know where to look for the next big thing."
Slater Victoroff
Founder of Indico Data
"One of the most exciting conferences I have been to. Everyone here had such an enthusiasm, everyone really wanted to learn and the other talks were excellent."


Browse through the schedule and see which talks interest you the most.
14:45 - 15:00
Shift AI starts in 15 minutes. Just enough time to grab some popcorn and make yourself comfy.
15:00 - 15:05
Opening Ceremony
A short talk welcome along with useful information on what awaits us throughout the next few hours.
15:05 - 15:30
Graph Deep Learning for Real-World Applications
Mark Weber (MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab) (Q&A)
Try to reason about something without any context. It’s possible, but your understanding will be limited and brittle. That’s because relationships between things give us critical information. In mathematics, we can model relational data as a graph or network structure -- nodes, edges, and the attributes associated with each. While deep learning has done remarkable things on Euclidean data (e.g. audio, images, video) graph deep learning has lagged because combinatorial complexity and nonlinearity issues making training very difficult and expensive. Yet it’s precisely the information hidden in that complexity that makes graphs so interesting.

In this talk, Mark Weber will introduce a class of methods known as scalable graph convolutional networks (GCN) and share experimental results from a semi-supervised anomaly detection task in financial forensics and anti-money laundering. We will take a closer look at a new method developed at MIT-IBM called EvolveGCN, which uses recurrent neural network architectures (RNN) for handling temporal dynamism. We will discuss the implication of these results in anti-money laundering and beyond.
15:30 - 15:50
Deep Learning in Intelligent Process Automation
Slater Victoroff (Indico Data) (Q&A)
RPA has exploded in recent years leading to never-before-seen levels of enterprise and desktop automation. As automation continues across the enterprise attention has turned from simple, deterministic processes to probabilistic document-driven processes now typically referred to as intelligent process automation (IPA). IPA has a number of new requirements and best practices distinct from those of RPA. Topics include human-in-the-loop learning, biases in model-chaining, and business-driven model efficacy assessment.
15:50 - 16:15
Don't type your passwords, speak!
Ishan Jain (Microsoft) (Q&A)
How would a world without password be? No more need to remember passwords! Think if you could just talk, and the system will let you in. In this session I will walk through how to create a voice login, using Azure Cognitive Services.
16:15 - 16:35
Customer Support meets AI
Slaven Mišak (Bonsai.tech) (Q&A)
Customer support can be a huge burden on companies in terms of quality of service and headcount. We know that AI can help companies with this drastically. And it is from this burden that our real-life AI solution came to life. In this talk, we would like to walk you through the idea, issues, and solutions that we went through to come up with a (successful) AI-based solution for Customer Support. The product called ticketflip.ai is an AI-infused Zendesk plugin that best fits between a support ticket and an agent, using a personalized model.
16:35 - 17:00
Doing AI Responsibly: Tools for Practitioners and Regulators
Ashley Casovan (AI Global) (Q&A)
With AI poised to add more than $15 trillion dollars to the global economy with limitless opportunities to provide better access to critical services like healthcare, banking, and communication, AI has proven the ability to enhance our daily lives and increase the analysis of information. However, early uses of AI have demonstrated that when not designed in a thoughtful and responsible manner, these systems can be biased, insecure, and not compliant with existing laws. The issues arising from the increased use of AI have been well documented including, hundreds of white papers, policies, journal articles, and research studies. However, there are limited resources available for practitioners to easily understand what developing good AI actually means to them.

The presentation will give an overview of the responsible AI landscape as well some of the tools being developed to support those building AI systems from the engineers to the product managers to the lawyers.
17:00 - 17:15
Mission Collision: Artificial intelligence in the era of social justice reforms
Kairan Quazi (Intel)
A daily scan of news headlines shows that technology has become invasive and pervasive in every aspect of modern civil life. The increasing use of artificial intelligence technology by law enforcement and criminal justice institutions is raising serious issues for civil liberties and social justice. “Bad data” disproportionately targets already marginalized populations that have faced historical systemic discrimination. This discussion will touch on the consequences of the current application of Artificial Intelligence technology on initiatives to achieve equity and justice in our civil institutions.
17:15 - 17:30
A small 15-minute break to stock up on some snacks and run to the bathroom without missing any of the talks.
17:30 - 17:50
Trust & AI, considerations for scale
Kieran Towey (KPMG)
With the acknowledged rapid advances in Compute and AI capability, and the outsourcing of operations to the machines, the question of Trust becomes paramount.
Various contributors have spoken about Ethical AI, Responsible AI etc, but what business needs is Trustworthy AI. This talk will touch on points to note when scaling AI and pointers as to how to address the trust gaps.
17:50 - 18:10
Using AI for automatic synthesis of computer programs
Boris Cergol (Comtrade Digital Services)
There is currently a lot of interest in how certain software engineering practices such as micro-services, containerization, versioning, CI/CD, QA, etc. can make the process of developing, deploying, and maintaining machine learning models more efficient. On the other hand, much less attention has been given to how machine learning can influence the way software is developed.

One of the essential ways to achieve the latter is by applying machine learning to the task of computer program synthesis, which many consider to be a kind of Holy Grail of Computer Science. In my talk, I will give an overview of some of the recent progress achieved on this problem and how it might soon introduce both new opportunities as well as risks in software engineering.
18:10 - 18:30
Aisling Fogarty (nineDots) & Ivan Burazin (moderator-Shift) (Q&A)
NineDots is a specialist technology recruitment agency based in Dublin, who work across a range of industries including AI/ ML, FinTech, Games, eCommerce and everything to do with computers, cables or code.

In this interview we will talk with Aisling and go through the issues that are troubling both employers and employees during this pandemic. Employers are trying to figure out how to go through the hiring process virtually and, even more troubling, how to onboard virtually afterwards. Data Science and developers are also having similar issues. In this interview we will go through some of the dos and don’ts on both sides and hopefully help you think of this new process.
18:30 - 18:50
Algorithmic Fairness: How to identify and treat biases in Machine Learning Models
Navdeep Sharma (Accenture The Dock)
With all the breakthroughs in Machine Learning space, ML models are now being used to make decisions affecting the lives of humans, more than ever. Hence judging the quality of a model can no longer only fulfilled by accuracy, precision, and recall. It's important to understand that each individual and group of people is being treated with equality without any historical bias existed in the data. This talk focuses on some of the many potential ways to establish fairness as metrics for ML models in your organization. Also, my learnings and challenges, I encountered while building a fairness tool for data scientists and business stakeholders.

Demo: Algorithmic Fairness Tool (AFT) was an innovation project, done at Accenture The Dock, which focused on bringing the latest research from academia and building a tool for the industry.
18:50 - 19:10
The business benefits of privacy-preserving synthetic data
Sebastian Weyer (Statice) (Q&A)
Privacy defines a state in which one is free from public attention and not observed or disturbed by others. Taken in the context of data, privacy is therefore a state in which an individual’s data is used only with their specific consent, and where any person or organization party to that individual’s data guarantee to prevent unauthorized disclosures or misuse of that information.

Therefore, in order to protect the individual's privacy, strict regulations have already been introduced in many regions and countries worldwide, such as CCPA in California or GDPR in the EU and we can expect many more to come. This puts businesses in a position in which they need to find a solution in order to leverage data while preserving privacy. We will address this topic and answer how businesses can benefit from synthetic data and unlock the value of data.
19:10 - 19:25
Building AI-first Products
Ehsan Yousefzadeh (AIG Investments)
With rapid advancements in AI research, new breakthroughs lead to new product opportunities. In this presentation, I will discuss the AI product development process, along with the challenges and rewards that come with it. I’ll also discuss the various degrees of AI products, the teams needed to build them, and what it takes to be a great AI-first product manager.
19:25 - 19:45
How Google Uses AI and Machine Learning in the Enterprise
Peter Grabowski (Google)
This session will outline how Google’s Corporate Engineering team is using AI and machine learning to spur innovation within Google. This session will identify the work that the Corporate Engineering team does (the structure, example use cases etc.), and the research that’s driving the democratization of AI (work in ML Fairness, Privacy, Interpretability and AutoML technologies).
19:45 - 20:05
On the Road to Artificial General Intelligence
Danny Lange (Unity Technologies, Inc.)
In this talk, Danny Lange discusses the role of intelligence in biological evolution and how this understanding helps advancing AI. He will demonstrate why a game engine is the perfect virtual biodome for AI’s evolution. Attendees will recognize how the scale and speed of simulations is changing the game of AI while learning about new developments in reinforcement learning.
20:05 - 20:10
Closing Ceremony
A look back at the event, a few closing words and a warm goodbye until the next time.
20:10 - 20:15
Time to wrap up the conversations, say final goodbyes and share your contact info with others.
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