Amazingly talented humans from all over the world, from different spheres and of different opinions, will share their intriguing projects and mindblowing theories to help you navigate the complexity of now and beyond. Practically speaking, expect anything from brain scientists to economists to artists to chefs. 2017 (and 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013), 50 % were men.
20 out of 25 SPEAKERS
Ahd Kamel (SAU)Close
Ahd Kamel — Filmmaker and Actress (SAU)
Ahd Hassan Kamel (عهدحسن كامل) is an actress and filmmaker from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. She is best known for her role as Fatima in the 2018 BBC2/Netflix series Collateral and her starring role in the 2014 BAFTA-nominated film Wadjda.
Ahd grew up in Saudi Arabia and moved to New York City in 1998. She received a BFA in Animation & Communication from Parsons School of Design in 2014 and a Directing degree from the New York Film Academy in 2015. Ahd then went on to study acting under the personal tutelage of William Esper at the William Esper Studio. Ahd has written, directed and acted in her two award-winning short films, The Shoemaker (2009) and Sanctity (2012).
Alexander Silva Lopera (ESP)Neurons Inc.Close
Alexander Silva Lopera — Psychologist, Neurons Inc. (ESP)
Alexander Silva Lopera is a psychologist specialized in neuroscience. He applies his particular set of skills to assessing practically everything that happens to come his way – from Coca-Cola ads to VR gaming.
Alex came from Spain to Denmark a couple of years ago to join Neurons Inc: a multidisciplinary team that includes economists, architects, VR artists and electricians from all over the world. Most of their time at Neurons is spent testing the brain’s reactions to virtual environments, architecture and multi-platform advertising.
Charlotta Ahlberg (SE)Volvo Car GroupClose
Charlotta Ahlberg — Corporate Innovation Manager, Volvo Car Group (SE)
Charlotta Ahlberg is the Corporate Innovation Manager at Volvo Cars. Among other commitments, Charlotta is responsible for the content of their annual Global Idea generation event and has extensive knowledge in the creative process and how to mine for golden ideas.
She’s originally an engineer with a Master’s Degree in Ergonomic Design who has put her passion into practice in several car projects by focusing on the human needs instead of letting technology drive the development. Back in 2004, Charlotta was part of the all-women-team developing the YCC, a concept car that was launched at the Geneva Motor show as “the car made by women for everyone”.
On the topic “You-men-centric & Innovation”, Charlotta will talk about the importance of you, the obstacle of men and the strategy of surviving. She will inspire you to think differently and dare you to try something new.
Daisy Ginsberg (UK)Close
Daisy Ginsberg — Artist (UK)
Daisy Ginsberg is an artist working across disciplines and media to explore the human values that shape material culture, science, technology and nature. Through installations, fictions, writing and curatorial projects, Daisy examines why we make things, what those things are and what their relationship with us and the world looks like.
Daisy has spent over ten years researching synthetic biology and the design of living matter, pushing the boundaries of design and science with scientists, engineers, artists, designers, historians, social scientists and museums around the world. She received the World Technology Award for Design in 2011, and the London Design Medal for Emerging Talent in 2012. Her work has twice been nominated for Designs of the Year (2011, 2015), with Designing for the Sixth Extinction being described as "romantic, dangerous… and everything else that inspires us to change and question the world".
Daisy exhibits internationally, including at MoMA New York, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Tokyo and the National Museum of China. Right now, Daisy is doing a residency at Somerset House Studios, London, where she is developing new projects (including one where she resurrects the smell of flowers made extinct by humans, in search of the sublime).
D. Fox Harrell (US)MITClose
D. Fox Harrell — Professor of Digital Media and Artificial Intelligence, MIT (US)
D. Fox Harrell is Professor of Digital Media and Artificial Intelligence at MIT. His research focuses on the relationship between imagination and computation. He founded the MIT Imagination, Computation and Expression Laboratory (ICE Lab) in order to develop new forms of computational narrative, gaming and digital media.
With an emphasis on equity, Harrell explores how virtual identities both implement and transform persistent issues of class, gender, sex, race, ethnicity and the dynamic construction of social categories. Springing from a basis in computer science, cognitive science and digital media arts, he’s undoubtedly going to take the audience on an interesting ride along the intersection between videogames, virtual worlds and social media when he goes on stage in September.
Dr. Lisa Mosconi (US)Close
Dr. Lisa Mosconi — Neuroscientist & Author (US)
Dr. Lisa Mosconi, PhD, is the Associate Director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic at Weill Cornell Medical College/NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital. In 2018, Lisa published her book Brain Food: the Surprising Science of Eating for Cognitive Power.
How does our diets affect our brain power? And what's the relationship between lifestyle and genetics?In the intersection between neuroscience and nutrition, Lisa focuses on how genetics, lifestyle and – more specifically – diets literally shape the brain.
As a world-renowned clinical neuroscientist and neuro-nutritionist with over 15 years of experience in the early detection and risk assessment of Alzheimer’s, Dr. Mosconi brings a unique and authoritative perspective to this nascent field. By integrating rigorous scientific knowledge of neuroscience, neurology, biology, genetics, brain imaging, nutrition and preventive medicine, "Brain Food" sets out to change the way we eat as an essential aspect of healthcare for our well-being.
Dr. Lynn Rotschild (US)Brown UniversityClose
Dr. Lynn Rotschild — Synthetic biologist & Astrobiologist, Brown University (US)
Dr. Lynn Rothschild is a Synthetic biologist and Astrobiologist at NASA's Ames Research Center and Adjunct Professor at Brown University.
Lynn is passionate about the origin and evolution of life on Earth (and elsewhere), while at the same time pioneering the use of synthetic biology to enable space exploration.
Just as travel abroad permits new insights into home, so too does the search for life elsewhere allow a more mature scientific, philosophical and ethical perception of life on Earth. These are some of the issues that Lynn will touch upon during her speech at The Conference.
Fredrika Inger (SE)Children's IKEAClose
Fredrika Inger — Global Business Area Manager, Children's IKEA (SE)
Fredrika Inger is the Global Business Area Manager for Children’s IKEA at IKEA of Sweden. Together with her team she is responsible for developing, supplying and commercializing the children’s range for all markets.
IKEA has a vision to create a better everyday life for the many. At Children’s IKEA the focus is to create a home where families with children love to play more and live their dreams together. The IKEA Play report is the largest study on people’s thoughts and attitudes when it comes to playing. For her speech at The Conference, Fredrika will share how the insights from the three reports and co-creating with friends have become enablers for bringing more play into an everyday context.
Galit Ariel (NLD)WondARlandsClose
Galit Ariel — Creative Director, WondARlands (NLD)
Galit Ariel is a transdisciplinary creative and strategic thinker who won’t hesitate to bitch-slap anyone still using the term “disruptive innovation”. Galit, a self-proclaimed “digital hippie”, has held leadership roles in design, retail and education.
In her book Augmenting Alice (2017), she explores the side-effects of Augmented Reality and the role that AR might play in redefining our understanding of identity, privacy, experience and ethics. As for her daily work at Wondarlands, Galit help clients shape their augmented futures through augmented narratives, interaction tools, brand touch-points and experience creation.
James Bridle (UK)Close
James Bridle — Artist & writer (UK)
James Bridle is an artist and writer working across technologies and disciplines. His artworks and installations have been exhibited in Europe, North and South America, Asia and Australia, and have been viewed by hundreds of thousands of visitors online.
In a session questioning what is real?, James will draw from his new book ”New Dark Age” where he digs deep into the digital sublime, surveying art, technology and information systems. The sheer volume of information available to us today reveals less than we hope. Rather, it heralds a new Dark Age: a world of ever-increasing incomprehension.
Kenjiro Kirton (UK)HatoClose
Kenjiro Kirton — Co-founder & Creative Director, Hato (UK)
Kenjiro Kirton is the Creative Director and co-founder of the British design agency Hato. He also leads the community-focused printing and publishing house Hato Press, which has produced projects with illustrators such as Jean Jullien and Rachel Ortas.
At Hato, they specialize in crafting cultural projects for various sectors including technology, education and the arts. Their ethos is to create design that engages its communities through creative play.
Spearheading the strategic direction of Hato, Kenjiro currently oversees co-design projects, events and workshops with clients such as Design Museum, Facebook, Science Museum and Uniqlo.
Kevin Slavin (US)The ShedClose
Kevin Slavin — Artistic Advisor, The Shed (US)
Kevin Slavin is Artistic Advisor was the founding Chief Science and Technology Officer at the forthcoming New York cultural institution, The Shed. He’s also a Research Affiliate and Founder of the Playful Systems group at MIT Media Lab.
At The Conference, Kevin will talk about participation as design, as opposed to the user-centric perspectives dominating the field today. When designers center around the user, the needs of other actors in the system go unseen – which is why user-centric design can be problematic.
As a serial entrepreneur, Kevin has co-founded several companies including one of the pioneers of location-based gaming, Area/Code (acquired to become Zynga New York). He has taught at NYU/ITP, Cooper Union, Fabrica and MIT and is the Vice Chair of the Cooper Union Board of Trustees.
Magnus Göransson (SE)LEGO Creative Play LabClose
Magnus Göransson — Design Director, LEGO Creative Play Lab (SE)
Magnus Göransson is the Design Director at LEGO Creative Play Lab. He and his team are on a mission to create “the future of play” by looking towards a product landscape where the line between the digital and the physical is decidedly more blurred.
At Creative Play Lab, a lot of the time goes into researching how kids’ behavior – as well as the notion of play – is changing and evolving globally. They’re constantly on the lookout for new technologies and partners that can help them spark new so called “play realities” that are relevant, educational and enjoyable at the same time. For his talk at The Conference, Magnus will share some stories about LEGO’s success, learnings from their past product launches and thoughts on what lies ahead.
Oobah Butler (UK)VICEClose
Oobah Butler — Journalist, VICE (UK)
Oobah Butler is a freelance writer and film host. Over the past two years, his work has gone from quietly admired on VICE Magazine and The Guardian to being renowned globally, recently being featured in Longform's "Best of 2017" list and a profile on NPR.
For the most part, his work uses comedy and absurdity to comment on the modern era. For example, after releasing his recent stunning film and article in which he made the shed he lives in TripAdvisor's top-rated restaurant in London, Oobah amassed 40 million views online and dominated headlines in the climate of "fake news", with The Washington Post referring to him as "the Donald Trump of TripAdvisor" and Good Morning Britain’s Susanna Reid dismissing him as a "naughty boy" on live television.
Whether it’s swindling his way as a fake designer to the top of Paris Fashion Week, covertly going on BBC2 primetime show The Eggheads to disturb them or letting his Instagram followers vote on every decision he made for a day and thusly ending up 250 miles from his home, his ambition is to immerse himself and explore different worlds in a fun, unorthodox way.
Rana Dasgupta (UK)Close
Rana Dasgupta — Novelist (UK)
Rana Dasgupta is a British novelist and essayist. Born in Canterbury in 1971, he studied at Balliol College, Oxford and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. In 2001, he moved to New Delhi to write. His first novel, Tokyo Cancelled, appeared in 2005. Solo (2009) won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize. In 2014 he published Capital, a Ryszard Kapuscinski Award and Prix Emile Guimet-winning non-fiction account of the stupendous changes engulfing Delhi as a result of globalization.
Dasgupta’s essays and articles have appeared in Granta, New Statesman, Prospect, The Paris Review, and The New York Times, and his books have been translated into twenty-one languages. The Daily Telegraph called him one of Britain's best novelists under 40 and Le Monde named him one of 70 people making the world of tomorrow.
Shuli Gilutz (ISR)Tel Aviv UniversityClose
Shuli Gilutz — UX and Children’s Technology Researcher, Tel Aviv University (ISR)
Shuli Gilutz is a PhD who specializes in UX research, assessment and strategy of interactive environments for children. With one foot in the industry and the other in academia, her working hours are split between teaching, advising and conducting research in a variety of user experience settings. She also does some strategic consulting work for companies that are developing and designing children’s digital experiences.
Shuli founded the phenomenal Child-Computer Interaction Research group on Facebook, and works to combine research and practice with startups at both Google Launchpad and MindCET accelerators.
Shu Yang Lin (TW)TaiwanPDISClose
Shu Yang Lin — Co-founder, TaiwanPDIS (TW)
Shu Yang Lin is a re-architect and international liaison of TaiwanPDIS, the innovation hub built by the Digital Minister of Taiwan. She leverages her passion and skills in interaction design and HCI (Human Computer Interaction) to rethink the interaction between the government and the civil society.
Shu’s background as an interaction designer and creative technologist helps her assist the digital transformation in Taiwan’s open government scene. During her speech at The Conference, she will share how Taipei prototypes future democracy and why this is important to the rest of the world.
Simone Rebaudengo (CHN)automato.farmClose
Simone Rebaudengo — Co-founder, automato.farm (CHN)
Simone Rebaudengo is a product and interaction designer exploring the implications of living and interacting with networked and autonomous things. Sometimes real, sometimes fictional.
In a session called ”What is real?”, Simone will talk about the challenge of applying fictions and future approaches to the world of ventures and explore the gradients in between real and fake with observations with some of his recent experiments.
Simone is a founding member of the design collective automato.farm and co-founder of Yeast, a venture design lab focusing on the future of food and living. Besides these ventures he’s working with clients like BMW, Philips, Google Creative Labs and Dubai’s Museum of the Future.
Ståle Grut (NOR)NRKbetaClose
Ståle Grut — Journalist, NRKbeta (NOR)
Ståle Grut is a journalist at NRKbeta, the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation's R&D lab. There, he writes about media, technology, culture and society. He is currently studying for an M.A. degree in New Media and Digital Culture at the University of Amsterdam. Previously, he was a strategic advisor at Schibsted’s "Tinius Trust" and a board member of the Norwegian Online News Association (NONA). He has presented at both South by Southwest and the Nordic Media Festival and is a regular contributor to Harvard Nieman Lab's yearly prediction for journalism.
At The Conference, Ståle will talk about how to do rudimentary media innovation with only cheap and accessible technology, your audience and a bit of fun – the same creative process that produced what Amy Webb referred to as "the best new journalism idea ever".
Tendayi Viki (UK)Benneli JacobsClose
Tendayi Viki — Strategy & Innovation Consultant, Benneli Jacobs (UK)
Dr. Tendayi Viki is managing partner at Benneli Jacobs, a UK-based strategy and innovation consultancy firm that helps established companies develop internal ecosystems so that they can innovate like startups. Tendayi holds an MBA and a PhD in Psychology. He’s also the author of the award-winning books "The Corporate Startup" and "The Lean Product Lifecycle", as well as a frequent contributor to Forbes Magazine.
He has previously worked as a consultant for companies like Pearson, Lufthansa Airplus, Unilever, Standard Bank and The British Museum. In 2015, Tendayi co-designed and helped implement Pearson’s Product Lifecycle, an innovation framework that won the Best Innovation Program at the Corporate Entrepreneurship Awards in New York.
During his talk at The Conference, Tendayi will explore how corporate leaders can go beyond creating physical spaces and innovation labs in order to provide real space for everyone within the organisation to innovate.