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Ben Reid

How should society prepare for AI? – September Update

It has been great to see the Forum gain momentum as we continue to welcome on board new founding members including IBM and ANZ. This is further acknowledgement of the importance of AI to New Zealand’s future economic prosperity and the essential role we hold in bringing organisations together from all corners of our business, government and education sectors.

I am delighted to announce that we will be partnering with to deliver AI Day 2018, New Zealand’s landmark AI conference. The event will be held on 28 March, 2018 and is dedicated to showcasing AI adoption, growing capability and ensuring that AI benefits New Zealand society as a whole. Watch this space as we announce our exciting list of international and local speakers.

As previously flagged, the Forum’s first major work stream, the New Zealand AI Impacts Research Project, is now well underway. Our research team have been conducting interviews up and down the country. We look forward to sharing the early findings of the research in the next few months before publishing the full report at the start of 2018.

Recently I have read some interesting articles from the HBR: A Survey of 3,000 Executives Reveals How Businesses Succeed with AI and an insightful piece about Facebook’s Applied Machine Learning (AML) group which has evolved over recent years into the engine room of AI at Facebook. Also I enjoyed the World Economic Forum’s story on how an AI was challenged to predict the most successful startups back in 2009 – with astonishing results to date. Plenty of valuable learnings in all of these articles.

I look forward to seeing some of you at our Wellington AI Connect event on 18 October for what promises to be a fascinating panel event moderated by the AI Forum’s Ben Reid. Also save the date for 17 November for a special event with Microsoft’s visiting VP Dave Heiner! More details to come soon.

Best regards

Stu Christie
AI Forum NZ Chair

Wellington Connect Event

Save the date for #AI2018


Dr Steve McKinlay will discuss the ethical implications of AI and big data on our concepts of freedom and democracy at the Royal Society, 12 October in Wellington.

Join us at the next AIHappyHour meetup on 18 October in Auckland. Also join Wellington’s Machine Learning and Data Science meetup group.

Last week, the Canterbury Tech Summit hosted an engaging panel discussion on AI Opportunities for New Zealand. Read our highlights summary here.

Check out how Australia can potentially benefit from automation and create millions of safer, more meaningful and valuable jobs in this newly released report.

Bloomberg Businessweek recently visited Soul Machines and reports on this remarkable startup. Read more. Meanwhile, we move beyond the Turing Test with the Allen AI Science Challenge.

Also check out Max Tegmark’s new book Life 3.0: Being Human in the Life of Artificial Intelligence. With the rise of AI, how can boards future proof their organisations? This article from the New Zealand Institute of Directors examines some of the key issues. In other local news, Idealog explores the opportunities while asking is AI a blessing or a curse?

A special welcome this month to our new members including ANZ, IBM and Practium Consulting. If your organisation wishes to join as an AI Forum member please contact us.Learn more about what we do. Gain the benefits of being part of this focused community.

Join the AI conversation, connect and be involved! Follow @AIForumNZ on TwitterFacebook and LinkedIn.

Want to know more?  Sign up for the AI Forum NZ update, it’s free and will take less than a minute!

Ben Reid I head up the AI Forum of New Zealand - working to harness the power of AI to help bring about a prosperous and inclusive future for New Zealand and the world. The AI Forum NZ brings together technology firms, businesses, universities and the government to connect, promote and advance the national AI ecosystem.