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CANCELLED: AI Narratives at Cambridge Science Festival

10 March 2020
From The Terminator to Big Hero Six, researchers from the Centre will discuss the importance of stories in understanding AI, as part of the 2020 Cambridge Science Festival.


Tuesday 10 March, 6-7pm
Babbage Lecture Theatre, New Museums Site, Downing Street, CB2 3RS

From R.U.R (1920) to The Terminator (1984) to Big Hero Six (2014), fictional narratives have an incredible influence in how we talk about and imagine artificial intelligence – even inspiring new developments. Researchers from the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence and colleagues from King's College London and the University of Glasgow, all contributors to the recent Oxford University Press edited collection AI Narratives, discuss the importance of stories in understanding AI.


Dr Olivia Belton is a postdoctoral research associate at the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence at the University of Cambridge. She is researching public perceptions and media representations of autonomous flight. Her work has been published in Feminist Media Studies, as well as in the edited collection AI Narratives: A History of Imaginative Thinking About Intelligent Machines, published by Oxford University Press. In 2019, she was awarded a PhD in Film, Television and Media Studies at the University of East Anglia, on gendered representations of genetic engineering and robotics in contemporary science fiction television.

Dr Kate Devlin is Senior Lecturer in Social and Cultural Artificial Intelligence at King’s College London. Her research in Human–Computer Interaction and Artificial Intelligence investigates how people interact with and react to technologies, both past and future. She is the author of Turned On: Science, Sex and Robots (Bloomsbury, 2018), which examines the ethical and social implications of technology and intimacy.

Dr Kanta Dihal is a postdoctoral researcher at the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence, University of Cambridge. She is the Principal Investigator on the Global AI Narratives project, and the Project Development Lead on Decolonizing AI. In her research, she explores how fictional and nonfictional stories shape the development and public understanding of artificial intelligence. Kanta’s work intersects the fields of science communication, literature and science, and science fiction. She is currently working on two monographs: Stories in Superposition, based on her DPhil thesis, and AI: A Mythology, with Stephen Cave.

Dr Anna McFarlane is a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Glasgow. She holds a PhD in cyberpunk, a branch of science fiction particularly concerned with the potential of artificial intelligence to shape our political and social landscapes. She is the co-editor of The Routledge Companion to Cyberpunk Culture (2019).

Book at the Cambridge Festival site