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Advances in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Conference 2024

This year’s Advances in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Conference, a Digital Futures activity, will take place at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Manchester over the course of two days on the 3rd and 4th of June 2024. It will also coincide with The University of Manchester’s bicentenary celebrations occurring across the year.

The Advances in Data Science and Artificial Intelligence Conference is Manchester’s annual data science and AI conference and brings together researchers from across the broad fields within data science and artificial intelligence to explore the latest advances and to discuss important topical questions being posed by society around the use of data science and AI.

This year, we will discuss the following topics:

  • Natural Language Processing
  • AI-Fundamentals
  • AI for Robotics
  • AI for Health 

The Conference will also be a key feature of the University’s bicentenary celebrations, marking 200 years since its foundation. The University of Manchester has long been at the forefront of research in data science and AI since their inception. In the present day, we are expanding on this legacy with significant investments through large regional and international partnerships designed to advance research and nurture opportunities for growth in the Northwest of England. 

Whilst for the past 200 years has seen The University of Manchester pioneering, innovating and discovering, the Conference will also emphasise how the University will continue to collaborate, encourage and influence – for the next 200 years and more. The University’s role in the world of data science and artificial intelligence will no doubt play a crucial part in this future.

Conference Agenda:

Day 1 - 3rd June

Day 2 - 4th June

Conference Speakers:

Professor Sotirios A. Tsaftaris, Chair in Machine Learning and Computer Vision at the University of Edinburgh

Professor Sotirios A. Tsaftaris, widely known as Sotos, is Chair in Machine Learning and Computer Vision at the University of Edinburgh. He also holds the Canon Medical/Royal Academy of Engineering Research Chair in Healthcare AI. He is the Director of the EPSRC-funded AI Hub for Causality in Healthcare AI with Real Data (CHAI). He leads VIOS a collaboration across industry and universities developing interdisciplinary AI. He is a Fellow of the European Laboratory for Learning and Intelligent Systems (ELLIS). Since 2023 he is a visiting researcher with Archimedes RC a research centre of excellence in AI in Athens, Greece. Between 2017-2023 he was a Fellow of the Alan Turing Institute.

Read more about Sotos here.

Talk Title: The Role of Causal AI in Personalised Medicine

Dr Claudia Lindner, Senior Research Fellow and Sir Henry Dale Fellow at The University of Manchester

Claudia is a Senior Research Fellow and Sir Henry Dale Fellow at The University of Manchester. Her career includes over 20 years of international experience in the development and application of computational methods, working within multi-disciplinary teams in both industrial and academic settings. Claudia uses methods from computer vision, machine learning and data science to develop automatic systems for analysing structures in medical images. She is dedicated to impactful research, actively advancing her work towards real-world solutions. In her role as the Translation Lead for the Christabel Pankhurst Institute for Health Technology Research and Innovation, she focusses on enhancing the academic research culture to facilitate the translation of research outcomes into benefits for society.

Read more about Claudia here.

Talk Title: Towards Application of AI in Clinical Practice

Dr Michael Dennis, Research Scientist at Google DeepMind

Michael is currently a Research Scientist on Google DeepMind’s Openendedness team. He was previously a Ph.D. Student at the Center for Human Compatible AI (CHAI) advised by Stuart Russell. Prior to research in AI, Michael conducted research on computer science theory and computational geometry.

Read more about Michael here.

Talk Title: Environment Generation for Deep RL

Dr Robert Pinsler, Senior Researcher at Microsoft Research Cambridge

Robert is the Senior Researcher at Microsoft Research Cambridge working on machine learning for materials discovery. Previously, he was a PhD student at the Machine Learning Group of the University of Cambridge, supervised by Prof. Carl E. Rasmussen and advised by Dr. José Miguel Hernández-Lobato. During his PhD, Robert worked on active learning and sequential decision-making approaches, including Bayesian batch active learning and reinforcement learning for robotics and molecular design.

Read more about Robert here.

Talk Title: AI for Materials Discovery and Simulation

Christopher Yau, Senior Research Fellow at the Big Data Institute, University of Oxford

Christopher is a Professor of Artificial Intelligence based at the Big Data Institute in Oxford working across the Nuffield Department of Women’s and Reproductive Health and the Nuffield Department of Population Health. They are also a Turing AI Fellow and their research is support by a UKRI/EPSRC Turing AI Acceleration Fellowship. Outside of Oxford, Christopher is also a PhD Programme Director at Health Data Research UK, leading the Health Data Research UK-Turing Wellcome PhD programme in Health Data Science.

Read more about Christopher here.

Talk Title: The Challenges of Applying Artificial Intelligence to Electronic Health Records

Professor Agnieszka Wykowska, Senior Researcher Tenured - Principal Investigator at the Italian Institute of Technology

Professor Agnieszka Wykowska leads the unit S4HRI “Social Cognition in Human-Robot Interaction” at the Italian Institute of Technology (Genoa, Italy), where she is also the Coordinator of CHT (the Center for Human Technologies). At IIT, she is also member of the Board of the Scientific Director. In addition, she is an adjunct professor of Engineering Psychology at the Luleå University of Technology as well as visiting professor at The University of Manchester.

Read more about Agnieszka here.

Talk Title: Bridging Cognitive Neuroscience with Robotics to Design Robots for Societal Applications

Dr Tulika Saha, Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Liverpool

Tulika is a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) at the Department of Computer Science in the University of Liverpool (UoL), United Kingdom. She is a part of the Natural Language Processing group at UoL. Prior to joining UoL, Tulika worked with Prof. Sophia Ananiadou, as a postdoctoral researcher at the National Centre for Text Mining (NaCTeM), The University of Manchester, UK. She earned her Ph.D. in 2021 from Indian Institute of Technology Patna, India (IITP).

Read more about Tulika here.

Talk Title: Transforming Healthcare with Advanced Dialogue Systems

Dr Fenia Christopoulou, Research Scientist at Huawei Noah’s Ark

Fenia is a Senior Research Scientist at Huawei Noah’s Ark Lab based in London, UK. Before joining Huawei in 2021, she spent a year as postdoctoral researcher at the NaCTeM group of The University of Manchester. She obtained her PhD in 2020 from The University of Manchester, supervised by Prof. Sophia Ananiadou. During her studies, she interned at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) in Tokyo, where she worked with Professor Makoto Miwa on Information Extraction problems. She also holds a combined BSc-MSc from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece in Electrical and Computer Engineering.

Read more about Fenia here.

Talk Title: Natural and Programming Language Models

Professor Chenghua Lin, Professor of Natural Language Processing at The University of Manchester

Chenghua Lin is Professor of Natural Language Processing in the Department of Computer ScienceThe University of Manchester. His research focuses on Natural Language Processing and Generation, Machine Learning, and the intersections between them, with specific interests encompassing dialogue and story generation, metaphor processing, evaluation methods, as well as representation learning and generation for music.  He is the Secretary of the ACL SIGGEN Board and a Member of the IEEE Speech and Language Processing Technical Committee.

Read more about Chenghua here.

Talk Title: The “BERT moment” for Music: Large-Scale Self-Supervised Training for Acoustic Music Understanding

Professor Chenguang Yang, Chair in Robotics in the Department of Computer Science, University of Liverpool

Professor Chenguang (Charlie) Yang holds the Chair in Robotics with Department of Computer Science, University of Liverpool, UK. He was a Professor of Robotics with University of the West of England, Bristol, leading Robot Teleoperation Group at Bristol Robotics Laboratory. He is a Fellow of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET), Institution of Mechanical Engineers (IMechE), Aisa-Pacific AI Association (AAIA), and British Computer Society (BCS).

Read more about Chenguang here.

Talk Title: Robot Control, Learning & Teleoperation

Conference Spotlight Talks:

Spotlight Talks



The Institute for Data Science and AI delivers the Data Science and Artificial Intelligence theme within The University of Manchester’s Digital Futures platform.