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Histories of Artificial Intelligence: A Genealogy of Power


Seminar co-organisers have taken part in a series of public events held remotely with partners in Cambridge and London. We plan to host two additional events for the general public before 2022.

  1. Cambridge Festival 2021 - Histories of Artificial Intelligence: A Genealogy of Power (1:30pm-2:30pm on 26th March)
  2. CogX 2021 - The Future of AI: Views from History (5:00-5:40pm on 14th June)
  3. TBA
  4. TBA

The HoAI Summer School was held 12-16 July 2021.

CogX 2021

Dr Richard Staley, Dr Sarah Dillon, and Dr Jonnie Penn, co-organisers of an Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminar on the ‘Histories of Artificial Intelligence,’ share their insights from a year-long study undertaken with a range of international participants on what the histories of AI reveal about power, automation narratives, and how we model and understand climate change.

Watch the presentation below.

Cambridge Festival 2021

Fears about misinformation, fake news, stolen elections, and events like the recent ‘A-Level Algorithm’ debacle demand reflection on the aims of our digital future. Where, exactly, are we going, and why? Understanding our future requires understanding our past - where we’re coming from determines where we’re going. It’s not just the hype, but the history of artificial intelligence that matters. Our panel unites experts in the History of Science and Technology and in Literary Studies for an interactive hour-long presentation drawn from sustained dialogue with hundreds of scholars based around the globe.

Presented by the co-organisers of the 2020-2021 Mellon Foundation Sawyer Seminars on 'Histories of Artificial Intelligence: A Genealogy of Power.'

  • Sarah Dillon (Faculty of English) – Co-editor of AI Narratives: A History of Imaginative Thinking About Intelligent Machines
  • Jonnie Penn(Department of History and Philosophy of Science) – Research Fellow at St. Edmund’s College and Harvard University
  • Richard Staley(Department of History and Philosophy of Science) – Author of Einstein’s Generation, co-organiser of Making Climate History

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