Join us for an informal lunch event exploring how Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Robotics are transforming many sectors, including the creative industries.
Revolutionary technologies are changing the way we create, design, and interact with the world around us in many diverse sectors, such as creative industries, health and social care and finance.
Can these technologies contribute to creativity in new fields, in new ways? How are human-machine interactions changing? Are machines changing what we mean by creativity? What limits the contribution of AI and robotics now? Explore these questions and hear about recent research by leading University of Manchester academics including Angelo Cangelosi, Professor of Machine Learning and Robotics, Erica Baffelli, Professor of Japanese Studies, Julia Dobson, Professor of French Film and Performance and Scott Midson, Lecturer in Liberal Arts,
This event is presented in partnership with the Creative Manchester and Digital Futures Research Platforms at The University of Manchester.
Erica Baffelli is Professor of Japanese Studies at The University of Manchester (UK). Before arriving at Manchester in 2013 she was a Lecturer/Senior Lecturer in Asian Religions at the University of Otago (New Zealand, 2007-2013). She is interested in religion in contemporary Japan, with a focus on groups founded from the 1970s onwards. Her recent research projected focused on religion in contemporary Japan, religion and media, new and minority religions, religion, gender and violence, and Buddhism and emotions. Publications include: Erica Baffelli, Jane Caple, Levi McLaughlin, and Frederik Schröer, eds. “The Aesthetics and Emotions of Religious Belonging: Examples from the Modern Buddhist World.” Special issue NVMEN: International Review for the History of Religions, 68, 5-6, 2021; Erica Baffelli, Fabio Rambelli and Andrea Castiglioni eds. Handbook of Religion in Japan (2021); Erica Baffelli and Ian Reader Dynamism and the Ageing of a Japanese 'New' Religion (2019); Media and New Religions in Japan (2016).
Angelo Cangelosi is Professor of Machine Learning and Robotics at The University of Manchester (UK) and co-director and founder of the Manchester Centre for Robotics and AI. He also is Turing Fellow at the Alan Turing Institute London. His research interests are in cognitive and developmental robotics, neural networks, language grounding, human robot-interaction and trust, and robot companions for health and social care. Overall, he has secured over £35m of research grants as coordinator/PI. Cangelosi has produced more than 300 scientific publications. He is Editor-in-Chief of the journals Interaction Studies and IET Cognitive Computation and Systems, and in 2015 was Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Transactions on Autonomous Development. He has chaired numerous international conferences, including ICANN2022 Bristol, and ICDL2021 Beijing. His book “Developmental Robotics: From Babies to Robots” (MIT Press) was published in January 2015, and translated in Chinese and Japanese. His latest book “Cognitive Robotics” (MIT Press), coedited with Minoru Asada, was recently published in 2022.
Julia Dobson is Professor of French Film and Performance, and Head of Modern Languages and Cultures in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures at The University of Manchester. Her diverse research interests across film and performance share a sustained engagement with negotiations of identity, exploring the representation of agency, voice and the body in contemporary film and theatre alongside shifting constructions of the private and the political. She is an editor of French Screen Studies and regularly works with film festivals and promotes French film to diverse audiences. Her current research in performance focuses on object-based theatre - examining the radically disruptive presence of performing objects (puppets, dolls, machines, robots and everyday objects) at the foundations and frontiers of popular and avant-garde performance. She is interested in the impact of the co-presence of human actors and non-human performing objects, addressed through consideration of voice, agency, scale and bodies. In a world of smart objects, artificial intelligences and enhanced bodies, the uncanny materiality and ambiguous agency of performing objects reveals contemporary renegotiations of what it means to be (human).
Scott Midson is Lecturer in Liberal Arts in the School of Arts, Languages and Cultures at The University of Manchester. A member of LTI, previously he was Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Institute, where he was lead researcher on the ‘Living with and Loving Machines’ project (2016-19). This project brought together questions about how we understand humans and technologies in their relationships, and sought to encourage an alternative way of reflecting on these using the theological notion of ‘love’.