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Confirmed Speakers for Oslo Big Data Day 2024

The speaker lineup for OBDD 2024 has started and will be updated continously through March, April and May 2024.

To find the location of the tracks and the speaks, please use Mazemap here: BI Wayfinding (N.B use the floorplans on the left side of the map to navigate different floors)


The full program with all speakerslots will be found here: PROGRAM OBDD 2024

We will start releasing speakers for OBDD 2024 continously from March)

Stephen Brobst (USA), CTO at Ab Initio Software

Speech: Generative AI:  What is it and Why Should You Care? 

The former CTO of Teradata Stephen Brobst will visit Norway during OBDD 2024. During Barack Obama's first term he was appointed to the Presidential Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) in the White House Office where he worked on development of the Big Data strategy for the US government.  

Stephen performed his graduate work in computer science at MIT where his Masters and PhD research focused on high-performance parallel processing. He also completed an MBA with joint course and thesis work at the Harvard Business School and the MIT Sloan School of Management.  He has dozens of patents and hundreds of publications in the areas of data management and machine learning.  Stephen is a TDWI Fellow and has been on the faculty of The Data Warehousing Institute since 1996.  In 2014, at the height of the Big Data phenomenon, he was ranked by ExecRank as the #4 CTO in the USA (behind the CTOs from Amazon.com, Tesla Motors, and Intel) out of a pool of 10,000+ CTOs.


Tom Gilb (USA), Sr. Consultant at Gilb International

Speech: How to envision your Competitive AI product Using Planguage for Systems Engineering , a data driven planning process

Being a global expert in software & systems engineering, Tom has been Consulting for Intel, IBM, Siemens, Philips, Statoil, Confirmit, JP Morgan, Credit Suisse, Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, GE, Rolls Royce, Moogsoft, BritishGas HIVE, HP, US DoD, UK MoD, Sony, Hitachi, Ericsson, Nokia, TomTom, Schlumberger, Boeing etc.

He is a respected Methods Inventor whose books inspired the Agile Scrum methodology, Textbook Writer, Keynote Speaker and Teacher to many international organizations. His goals are to write, publish and speak more to senior managers about clear thinking about their top level objectives (how to quantify them all and using machine-learning at that). Tom's Specialties are Requirements Engineering for large and complex systems, with emphasis on Quantification of Quality Requirements


Marija Slavkovik (NOR), Professor at University of Bergen

Speech: AI Moral Arbiters 

Marija Slavkovik is a Professor with the Faculty for Social Sciences of the University of Bergen where seh is the acting Head of the department of Information Science and Media Studies . Her background is in computer science and artificial intelligence. She has been doing research in machine ethics since 2012. Machine ethics studies how moral reasoning can or should be automated.

Marija works on formalising ethical collective decision-making. Marija is a vice-chair of the Norwegian AI Association, board member of European Association for Artificial Intelligence, a member of the informal advisory group on Ethics, Legal, Social Issues (ELS) of CLAIRE, in the editorial board of AI Magazine, and AI and Society track editor of JAIR. She is the current head of the department of information science and media studies that since 2021 has been offering, in collaboration with the department of Informatics, he first bachelor program in AI in Norway. 


Max Cao (USA), CEO at Jacobi Robotics

Speech: The role of AI in industrial robotics

Max Cao is the CEO of Jacobi Robotics, a new artificial intelligence and robotics company that is democratizing access to robotic automation. He holds a Master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from Imperial College London, where he was awarded the National Power Prize as the best overall student in his year. Max completed his final year of study at UC Berkeley as a member of the AUTOLAB and the Berkeley Artificial Intelligence Research Lab. He previously represented Norway in the International Physics Olympiad and is an avid mountaineer and skier. Max resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Recent advances in AI combined with an ongoing labor shortage are creating an inflection point for robot adoption. There is a potential for deployments to grow by an order of magnitude, but that is currently constrained by the software infrastructure. New tools are needed to bridge this gap.


Anine A. Harto (NOR), Sr. data Engineer Snøkam

Speech: How to Build a Self-Service Data Platform like the Wizard of Oz 

Anine Aarvold Harto works as a Senior Data Engineer at Snøkam, a consultancy firm founded just a year ago, where she specializes in data platform development. Anine is driven by her passion for the potential of data and technology, and to make solutions loved by both users and developers.

How can an organization transform itself from being dependent on a centralized data team to one where access to and analysis of data is democratized? In her speech, Anina draws inspiration from 'The Wizard of Oz' as she explores the journey through this transformation by introducing a modern self-service data platform. During this journey, she will delve into some key principles which, from experience, are considered crucial for overcoming traditional bottlenecks, making data easily accessible and integrated, and enhancing overall data management.


Osama Hanif (NOR), Product Manager at Microsoft

Speech: Demystifying Generative AI

 Osama Hanif is an entrepreneur, product leader, angel investor, and board advisor with a profound impact in the Norwegian tech industry. Currently leading the personalization efforts for Copilot at Microsoft 365, he has previously played a pivotal role in Kahoot!'s growth, contributing to its $170 million ARR through the development of key products and features like search and recommendations.

As a co-founder of Diffia, a health tech company aimed at optimizing healthcare professionals' workflows with digital assistants. His journey in machine learning began at Telenor with the creation of a personalized pricing product, showcasing his ability to drive user engagement and business growth through data-driven insights. An active mentor and advisor, Osama uses his vast experience in AI, product management, and machine learning to support startups on their path to success, establishing himself as a thought leader passionate about innovative solutions to complex challenges.


Benita Mackay (GBR), Patent Advisor at Bryn Aarflot

Speech: IP | Protecting your data, protecting your innovation, generating value 

Benita is a patent attorney specialising in software and AI protection, with a PhD in AI applied to bioengineering. Originally from the UK, she now help Norwegian businesses and innovators protect their ideas, both nationally and internationally, using a range of Intellectual Property (IP) tools from copyright to trade secrets to patents.

The main two aims are (1) show how software and AI can be protected in the EEA, UK and USA using IP, and (2) show how even basic IP rights can generate value. While mainly aimed at innovators, startups and SMEs, the speech will give practical advice relevant for anyone hoping to protect and/or monetise their software/AI ideas. This is not a sales pitch or a marketing campaign for IP firms. This will be clear practical guidance and solutions. Software and AI could and should be protected and, compared to companies in the UK and USA, Norwegian companies are losing out. By speaking at events like this, I hope to change this.


Omar Richardson (NED), CTO at Simula Consulting

Speech: AI for biodiversity: empowering local communities 

Omar Richardson is the Chief Technology Officer at Simula Consulting, where he focuses on the management of the R&D project portfolio. With a background in research and technology development, Omar has been a technology consultant for several research institutes in Scandinavia. As a part of Simula Consulting, Omar has lead innovative AI applications, particularly in business process optimisation and decision-assistive systems. His mission to make sure that technology is built to serve society and is reflected in his leadership at Simula Consulting, where he focuses on developing AI solutions that are not only commercially viable but also address key societal challenges.

In this speech, we explore a recent innovative AI project Simula Consulting contributed to: protecting the Norwegian Atlantic salmon from the invasive humpback salmon. By collaborating with local actors such as fishermen and engineers, we built a successful AI-driven solution that successfully repels the humpback salmon from Norwegian rivers. We'll share insights on our smart fish trap system, recognized at the World AI Cannes Festival 2023 and the UN's Sustainability Awards, and provide key take-aways on how to build AI for nature. 


Łukasz Borowiecki (POL), CEO at 10 Senses

Speech: AI Explainability for Enhanced Profitability and Regulatory Compliance

Łukasz Borowiecki is the co-founder and CEO of 10 Senses, a company that provides services in the areas of Data Science, Machine Learning, and Business Intelligence. He holds a Ph.D. in Economics from the Warsaw School of Economics and an M.A. in Sociology from Jagiellonian University in Kraków. Before founding 10 Senses, Łukasz worked as a consultant at EY Business Advisory (formerly Ernst and Young). Overall, he has 15 years of experience in data science and data-focused projects. Łukasz is the author of several publications on Polish AI ecosystem. He is also an active participant in consultations and workgroups related to the Polish AI strategy.

Companies employ various AI models in their client interactions. However, these models are often referred to as 'black boxes,' implying their complexity hinders a clear explanation. To make informed business decisions, managers require a profound understanding of how the model perceives clients. Additionally, compliance with upcoming EU regulations, such as the AI Act and AI Liability Directive, mandates that models must be explainable. The speech will feature an overview of how Shapley values can explain AI models based on tabular data. A comparison with regression will be presented, as Shapley values can be viewed as a 'kind of' nonparametric regression, addressing certain limitations of regression modeling, such as collinearity, confounding, and ceteris paribus. Practical use cases for such explainability will be explored in both business and regulatory contexts.


Kjersti Aas (NOR), Research Director at Norsk Regnesentral

Speech: Explainable AI – possibilities and pitfalls 

Kjersti Aas is research director in the department for statistical analysis and machine learning at Norsk Regnesentral (Norwegian Computing Center). She has been project leader for more than 200 academic and industrial projects. Her current research interests include AI and Explainable AI for financial applications. 

Interpretability is crucial when a complex machine learning model is to be applied in areas such as medicine, fraud detection, or credit scoring. Often, there is a clear trade-off between model complexity and model interpretability, meaning that it is often hard to understand why these sophisticated models perform so well. In response, a new line of research, Explainable AI, has emerged that focuses on helping users interpret the predictions from advanced machine learning methods. In this talk I discuss some of the most frequently used methods for Explainable AI.


Francesco Ravazzolo (ITA), Professor at BI Norwegian Business Scool

Speech: Artificial intelligence, geopolitical risks and firm risks 

Francesco Ravazzolo is Full Professor of Econometrics at Faculty of Economics and Management at Free University of Bozen-Bolzano and Head of the Department of Data Science and Analytics at BI Norwegian Business School. He is also co-founder of AIAQUA, COMMODIA and STAIRS. His research focuses on commodity markets, data anlytics, econometrics, energy economics, financial econometrics and macroeconometrics. He has published in several leading academic journals.

The research develops indices of geopolitical risk divided by country based on artificial intelligence. Then, it integrates it in firm business models and measures risks that firms have associated to it.


Pending Speaker Profiles

Terje Warhuus Vatle (NOR), Strategist at TimExtender

Lars Fjelddalen (NOR), Sr. Manager at Sopra Steria

Dr.Mohamed Hussien (EGY), Service Delivery at McKinsey & Company

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