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.
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 (SWE)Volvo Car GroupClose
Charlotta Ahlberg — Corporate Innovation Manager, Volvo Car Group (SWE)
Charlotta Ahlberg holds the position as Corporate Innovation Manager at Volvo Car Group. She’s an MSc Engineer in Ergonomic Design and has substantial international experience from studies and work around the globe. For more than 16-years she has put her passion into practice in several Volvo car projects such as the famous Volvo YCC, Concept Car that was launched at the Geneva Motor show as a car made by women for modern people.
In a session called innovation is for everyone, Charlotta will share her knowledge and experiences in the different perspectives of Innovation in the large corporate environment. How to take advantage of the enormous strengths and collective brainpower in a large global enterprise? What did she learn from creating a concept car together with only other women? She will guide you through her takings from working with product- and corporate innovation for 16 years, concentrated into her 6 T success factors.
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. Daisy Ginsberg (UK)Close
Dr. 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 has a PhD in Design Interaction from the Royal College of Art. 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).
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 Rothschild (US)Brown UniversityClose
Dr. Lynn Rothschild — 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.
Indy Johar (UK)Dark Matter LaboratoriesClose
Indy Johar — Architect & Co-founder, Dark Matter Laboratories (UK)
Indy Johar is an architect by training and the founding Director of 00, where he leads the Dark Matter Laboratories team. He's also a Senior Innovation Associate with the Young Foundation and Visiting Professor at the University of Sheffield.
On behalf of 00, Indy has co-founded multiple social ventures from Impact Hub Westminster to Impact Hub Birmingham and the HubLaunchpad Accelerator, along with working with large global multinationals and institutions to support their transition to a positive Systems Economy. He has also co-led research projects such as The Compendium for the Civic Economy, whilst supporting several 00 explorations/experiments including the wikihouse.cc and opendesk.cc.
Dark Matter labs aims to apply complex systems science to Urban & Regional Renewal: turning what is generally perceived as a threat of our time – spill-over effects across borders, boundaries and silos – into a resource to solve the wicked challenges society faces in the 21st century.
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.
Karin Pettersson (SWE)Schibsted Media GroupClose
Karin Pettersson — Director of Policy, Schibsted Media Group (SWE)
Karin Pettersson is Director of Public Policy at Schibsted Media Group. She has a long background in media and politics, and was the political editor of Aftonbladet between 2010-2018. She is also the founder and former editor-in-chief of Fokus news magazine.
In a session called ”Broken Promise Land”, Karin will talk about social media, Silicon Valley and the threats to democracy, drawing from her vast research and new book (co-written with Martin Gelin), that will be published in October (Natur & Kultur).
In 2016 and 2017, she was on leave to study at Harvard as a fellow of the Nieman Foundation and the Berkman Klein Center for Internet and Society.
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 — Founding Chief Science & Technology Officer, The Shed (US)
Kevin Slavin 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 and a serial entrepreneur.
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.
Linda Liukas (FIN)Hello RubyClose
Linda Liukas — Author & programmer, Hello Ruby (FIN)
Linda Liukas is a programmer, storyteller and illustrator from Helsinki, Finland. Her book series "Hello Ruby" introduces the whimsical world of technology for kids and has been translated to over 25 languages.
Computers surround us in our daily lives, but the most powerful ideas of computing go beyond the sleek silver containers and glowing boxes. What are these ideas? And how do we prepare our kids for a world where more and more of the problems around us look like computers? These are questions Linda will elaborate on in the closing keynote of The Conference 2018.
"Hello Ruby" made its debut on Kickstarter and quickly smashed its $10,000 funding goal after just 3.5 hours and gathering 380 000 dollars in total funding. Linda is also the founder of Rails Girls, a global movement to teach young women programming in over 270 cities.
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's primetime show 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.
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 present a simple solution for improving internet debate: requiring participants to answer a few basic questions first. The experiment was referred to as "the best new journalism idea ever" by Amy Webb. It sits in stark contrast to the ever more frictionless – and often unconstructive – debate culture reigning on the large social media sites.
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.
Victoria Percovich Gutierrez & Åsa Bjerndell (SE)White ArkitekterClose
Victoria Percovich Gutierrez & Åsa Bjerndell — Sustainability strategist & Architect, White Arkitekter (SE)
When eternity is your deadline – what values will end up in the center?
Victoria Percovich Gutierrez, sustainability strategist with an MBA, and Åsa Bjerndell, lead architect and development manager, are part of the team at White Arkitekter that is working with "Råängen", a unique urban development project in the city of Lund, and its client Lund's Cathedral.
At The Conference, Victoria and Åsa will talk about how Råängen is challenging both the traditional values of architecture, urban development and market economy, as well as explain how the classic models of success are normally achieved and created.
What values are crystallized when eternity defines a project? And what purpose is given to the value of sustainability when the perspective of time goes beyond everything we know and rely on today?