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Turing Talk 2022 - A Day in the Life of a Smart City with Prof Julie A. McCann

Tech and Innovation
Turing Talk 2022 - A Day in the Life of a Smart City with Prof Julie A. McCann
Turing Talk 2022 - A Day in the Life of a Smart City with Prof Julie A. McCann
Event Details

Part of the IET EngTalk and BCS Lecture Series

With the recent COP26 held in Glasgow, sustainability and climate adaption is on everyone’s minds. The main outcome of this has been an agreement to strengthen 2030 targets by the end of 2022. This talk will discuss the role of the Internet of Things, specifically sensor-based technologies, in both providing data to better understand resource usage for optimization and reduction, as well as providing ground truths to track those targets are being met. To do this this technology needs to be embedded in our transport, our factories, our homes even, and with this brings a new set of challenges around privacy and security. Indeed, such systems are core to building the Digital Twins that drive decision making, but what happens when such systems go wrong? Prof Julie A. McCann will explore this and potential solutions to such scenarios and will illustrate where the technologies are heading with a future look.


Professor Julie A McCann heads up Adaptive Emergent Systems Engineering (AESE) in the Dept of Computing where she works with a highly multi-disciplinary group of Post Docs and PhD students from a broad spectra of backgrounds. She leads the Resilient and Robust Infrastructure challenge part of the Data Centric Engineering theme in the Alan Turing Institute, she is PI for the NRF funded Singapore Eco Cities initiative, and is Deputy Director of PeTraS and therein leads the Logistics 4.0 project with the Tate Modern, ARM and Ordinance Survey. She is Imperial PI for the EPSRC Science of Sensing Systems Software (S4) programme grant. Until recently she was the Co-director of the Intel Collaborative Research Institute on Sustainable Connected Cities, the Co-PI of the NEC Smart Water Lab, and Director of the cross-Imperial Smart Connected Futures Network.

She has chaired and remains actively involved with the field’s top conferences (including Infocom, Sensys, IPSN, and EWSN) and is an Associated Editor for IoT-J. She currently delivers the Pervasive Computing teaching module and in the past she lectured Operating Systems courses. She was chair of the Department of Computing Equality and Diversity committee (2018-2021), is a Fellow of the British Computer Society, a Chartered Engineer and consults on computer-based futures for TV and Film.


Belfast Turing Talk 2022 Local Insight speaker - Dr Robert Smith PhD FRSA - Head of Technology for AI/ML at Digital Catapult

Digital Twins: Engines for Sustainable Future Growth

While computer modelling is as old as computing itself, technologies that have come to their fruition in just the last few years (including IoT, advanced networking, scalable AI, advanced networking, and immersive technologies) have made Digital Twins of complex physical systems possible. This opens enormous possibilities for more sustainable, resilient, and efficient design and operations across numerous sectors, from energy to manufacturing to agriculture, and more. However, there are substantial barriers to both adoption and innovation in Digital Twins. This talk will discuss the promise and problems of Digital Twins, and introduce the Design Smarter Digital Twin centre, a collaboration between DC, Northern Ireland universities and industry partners such as Thales and Artemis, that will attempt to overcome barriers and lower the time, cost, and risks of Digital Twin technology, building a unique national capability for Northern Ireland.


Dr Robert Smith PhD FRSA is the Head of Technology for AI/ML at Digital Catapult, an organization charged with accelerating the early adoption of advanced technology for the benefit of the UK. Dr. Smith is a technologist, complexity scientist, entrepreneur, writer, and sought-after public speaker. He has worked with clients, companies, and institutions across the private and public sectors. Dr. Smith has authored over 100 academic papers on complex-systems-based artificial intelligence and knowledge representation, and numerous articles in the popular press. He has conducted research and development projects for all branches of the US military, Los Alamos National and Oak Ridge National Laboratories, NASA, Boeing, NSF, EPSRC, The European Union, DERA, British Aerospace, Airbus, British Telecom, The Bank of England, The UK Competitive Market Authority, and others. He is a former Associate Editor of The IEEE Transactions on Evolutionary Computation and the journal Evolutionary Computation. He is the author of Rage Inside the Machine, which was shortlisted for UK Best Business Book of 2020. He is a Founding Trustee of We and AI, an NGO dedicated to improving AI’s effects on society. He is a Senior Fellow of the Computer Science Faculty at University College London where he co-founded the Centre for Decision-Making Uncertainty. He also co-founded and co-created BOXARR Ltd., a company whose Digital Twin technology has been used globally by Blue Chip Companies to help people cope with some of the world’s most complex industrial challenges.

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