IIIT Hyderabad to organise annual conference on technology and society on Feb 23

IIIT Hyderabad conference aims to promote greater understanding of emerging technologies like AI and machine learning

IIIT Hyderabad to organise annual conference on technology and society on Feb 23 International Institute of Information Technology Hyderabad (IIITH) (image source: Official Facebook account)
Press Trust of India | Feb 10, 2022 - 6:07 p.m. IST
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HYDERABAD: International Institute of Information Technology Hyderabad (IIITH) will be hosting an 'annual conference on technology and society' to promote greater understanding and utilization of the latest emerging technologies like, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML) and related topics, as well as foster widespread adoption and innovation globally, with emphasis on the bottom of the pyramid. It brings together social scientists, NGOs, technologists, research groups, innovators, policymakers, impact funders and CSR organizations to deliberate on how emerging technologies can assist and enable rural education and healthcare.

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The conference includes plenary panel discussions themed on AI and Society, with a special focus on how AI can enable social outcomes. Another session on healthcare at the BoP, specifically how healthcare can be taken effectively to rural doorsteps. Another aspect of the conference includes closed-door roundtable discussions among social tech leaders, changemakers and industry experts where they will deliberate on how CSR can fund social change, and collaborate to amplify tech-led impact. It also includes a startup showcase highlighting the successes of startups that have used tech for social impact.

Plenary speakers include Raj Reddy, chairman of IIITH governing council; PJ Narayanan, director of IIITH; Vivek Raghavan, EkStep; Srinath Reddy, PHFI and most likely Ganesh Natarajan (5F world), Ramji Raghavan (Agastya Foundation), Amirullah Khan (CDPP), and Manoj Gopalakrishnan (Care India).

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The first edition of the conference coincides with the formal inauguration of IIITH's Raj Reddy Center for Technology and Society (RCTS) to celebrate and amplify Raj Reddy's passion for research that helps the bottom of the pyramid. Through technology-based solutions in the realm of rural education and healthcare, as well as working directly with NGOs and grassroots organizations to build AI and emerging tech solutions for the NGOs RCTS aims to amplify their impact. Several projects are already underway with a few leading NGOs.

Raj Reddy Center at IIITH

This centre is an initiative of IIIT Hyderabad to enable research and emerging technology-led solutions for grassroots education and public health, with specific emphasis on the rural population. The problem faced by the bottom of the societal pyramid is huge and needs solutions that can be scaled to billions of underprivileged. Several NGOs have been doing a phenomenal job on the ground but many NGOs don't have access to the latest research and technology solutions. This limits the scale amplification due to dependency on volunteers alone to scale. Access to technology research institutions will help leverage emerging and futuristic technologies (including AI, virtual reality, and others) to amplify their impact. The centre will pursue two broad directions for high societal impact: innovations in rural education, and innovation in healthcare for underprivileged sections of society.

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