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Festival of Learning

Artificial Intelligence – all in for the future of our children


As Artificial Intelligence becomes an increasing part of our daily lives, we can only imagine what it will mean for future generations of children and young people in Ireland. Initial research suggests potential benefits for children, in wellbeing, health and learning. AI also offers opportunities to rethink and improve how services are designed and delivered. At the same time, there are questions about important issues such as privacy, security and transparency.

This event aims to start an important conversation in policy, research and services for children and young people. We will demystify the terminology, hear examples, consider some ethical questions and the implications for policy makers.

Event details

This event takes place online, on Wednesday November 11th , between 2 and 3pm.

Attendance is free, but booking is essential.

Tune in here

Moderator & Panel Contributors

Alexa Hasse

The keynote for this event is Alexa Hasse. Alexa is a Research Associate at the Youth and Media Project at the Berkman Klein Center (Harvard University). Alexa is the author of ‘Youth and Artificial Intelligence, where we stand’ and was more recently involved in the development of UNICEF Draft Policy Guidance on AI for children.

Panel contributors include Barry O’Sullivan, Professor of AI at University College Cork, and Vince McCarthy, CEO and co-founder of the Festival of Curiosity.

This event will be moderated by Áine Kerr. Áine is a teacher turned journalist turned entrepreneur and is co-founder of a new start up called Kinzen. During the summer months, Áine presented the programme ‘Reignite’ on Radio 1 and has also presented ‘The Business’ on RTE. She is currently undertaking the Sulzberger Leadership Program at Columbia University.

Programme of Events

Championing prevention and early intervention in Government


Tuesday November 3rd

What can the government do to support prevention and early intervention? Join keynote speaker Dr Patrick McCarthy (former President, Annie E. Casey Foundation) and a panel including Conor Rowley (Assistant Secretary, DCYA) and Dr Aisling Gillen (Tusla), to hear about how the state has championed prevention and early intervention in Ireland.

Strengthening prevention in policy


Thursday November 5th

If prevention is better than cure, then how can we do more of it? In his keynote, Professor Paul Cairney (University of Stirling) will share findings from extensive interviews with policy makers in Scotland and the UK. We’ll hear from experienced policy makers in Estonia and Ireland.

What is the role of entrepreneurial thinking in social service settings, and how can we enhance it?

Rowan Conway

Monday November 9th

Entrepreneurs and innovators can bring creative thinking and new approaches to some of the biggest challenges in public services. Join keynote Rowan Conway (UCL Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose) to hear about the public entrepreneur along with stories of innovative thinking from Ireland and the US.

Artificial Intelligence – all in for the future of our children

Alexa Hasse

Wednesday November 11th

There is increasing interest in Artificial Intelligence, but what does it mean for the wellbeing and lives of future children and young people in Ireland? Keynote contributor Alexa Hasse from the Berkman Klein Centre at Harvard University will unpack the jargon. A panel of speakers will consider the ethical questions, and we’ll hear practical examples of how AI can be used to improve outcomes for children and young people.