Technology Innovation with a Conscience

Friday, May 31, 2019, 6 - 7:30pm

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Scientific American Editor-in-Chief Mariette DiChristina moderates a conversation about the intersection of artificial intelligence (AI), ethics, and healthcare. Panelists include Bernie Meyerson, Chief Innovation Officer Emeritus, IBM; John C. Havens, Executive Director, The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Global Initiative for Ethical Considerations in Artificial Intelligence and Autonomous Systems; and Shiva Kumar, Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer, Watson Health, IBM. Each provides a different  perspective that span technology innovation, ethics of AI, and how AI applies to healthcare, a growing application at the public forefront.

A science journalist for more than 20 years, Mariette DiChristina has served as the editor-in-chief of Scientific American, the oldest continuously published monthly magazine, since December 2009. Before joining Scientific American, DiChristina spent nearly 14 years at Popular Science in positions culminating as executive editor. In 2011, she was named a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for the Section on General Interest in Science and Engineering. She is also the past president (in 2009 and 2010) of the 2,500-member National Association of Science Writers.

Dr. Bernie Meyerson, an IBM Fellow, serves as IBM’s Chief Innovation Officer Emeritus. Joining IBM in 1980, Dr. Meyerson invented Silicon:Germanium technology, ultimately founding and leading IBM’s highly successful Analog and Mixed Signal business. He went on to many executive roles, leading global semiconductor development, strategic alliances for the Systems and Technology Group, and culminating in his role from 2010 as IBM’s Chief Innovation Officer. His team led the definition and integration of corporate-wide technical and business strategic initiatives. He has served as Chairman of the World Economic Forum’s Meta-Council on Emerging Technology, now co-chair of this ongoing project with Ms. DiChristina. Dr. Meyerson is a Fellow of the American Physical Society and IEEE and a member of the United States National Academy of Engineering. He has received numerous technical and business awards including the Lifetime Achievement Award from SEMI, 2011 Pake Prize of the American Physical Society, and the 2014 Turing Lecturer at the Royal Institute. Most recently, he was honored with the 2015 National Medal for Public Service by the government of Singapore for his many years of service and impact as advisor to the nation.   

John C. Havens is Executive Director of The IEEE Global Initiative on Ethics of Autonomous and Intelligent Systems that has two primary outputs – the creation and iteration of a body of work known as Ethically Aligned Design: A Vision for Prioritizing Human Well-being with Autonomous and Intelligent Systems and the recommendation of ideas for Standards Projects focused on prioritizing ethical considerations in A/IS. Mr. Havens is also the Executive Director of The Council on Extended Intelligence, a program created by The IEEE Standards Association and The MIT Media lab to proliferate the ideals of responsible participant design, data agency and metrics of economic prosperity prioritizing people and the planet over profit and productivity. He has written for Mashable and The Guardian on issues of technology and wellbeing and is author of the books, Heartificial Intelligence: Embracing Our Humanity To Maximize Machines and Hacking Happiness: Why Your Personal Data Counts and How Tracking it Can Change the World.

Shiva Kumar is currently Chief Strategy Officer & Head of Business Development of IBM’s Watson Health. For the past several years he has provided the impetus for IBM to build a “Cognitive” business in Health and Life Sciences. He also led teams in IBM Research to create capabilities at the convergence of information flow, work flow, Big Data, and Analytics. These capabilities created the underpinnings of some of the new businesses IBM has launched. For many years, Mr. Kumar directed teams in IBM’s Enterprise Transformation organization to improve business performance across IBM’s execution units. The teams applied analytics and insights to enable growth of revenues and labor effectiveness. Many of the innovations have enabled new ways in which IBM runs its businesses. Before joining IBM, Shiva was an Associate Principal in McKinsey & Company’s Stamford Office, where he worked in the areas of business building related to technology and the use of analytics to improve business performance. 

Located in the Frederick P. Rose Auditorium, at 41 Cooper Square (on Third Avenue between 6th and 7th Streets)

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.