Campus and Community

Técnico hosted conference on the impacts of robotics and artificial intelligence in the future

A conference focused on the several trends that will shape the economy and companies in a near future was held at Técnico to celebrate the 6th anniversary of Dinheiro Vivo.

“It makes perfect sense for us to organise this conference here, at Técnico, where technology and innovation go hand in hand”, said Rosália Amorim, director of Dinheiro Vivo, in the beginning of the conference “Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Technology”, held this Thursday, December 7, at Técnico. The event brought together several entrepreneurs and experts. “Are we ready to live with robots?”, asked the director at the opening of the debate.

According to Daniel Proença de Carvalho, chairman of the Global Media Group “the issues that we are going to address today don’t concern the future. These are very important issues that concern the present and that’s why we are here to discuss them”, he explained. The chairman of the Global Media Group shared his “optimistic perspective regarding the ability of people to adapt to the changes”. “The impact of scientific and technological advances will have an extraordinary effect”, he underlined. “I am sure that we will leave this room more conscious and better prepared to face the future”, he concluded.

In order to face the future “we have to look at the present and prepare ourselves to the future”, said professor Arlindo Oliveira, president of Técnico. “This topic must be deeply discussed by the society so that we all become aware of the consequences, impacts and opportunities”, said professor Arlindo Oliveira, highlighting the importance of “training and raising awareness” among society for this new reality.

António Brochado Correia, partner at PwC, talked about the trends that will shape the economy and companies in the medium and long term, such as rapid urbanization, climate change, scarcity of resources, shift in global economic power, demographic and social changes, rapid technological development and geopolitical changes that will shape the world. “Human labour will not disappear. Humans and robots will have to adapt each other”.

According to João Vasconcelos, Senior Advisor at Clearwater International “this revolution will destroy companies and jobs but it will create many others”. “Don’t be afraid of technology because it can’t dominate us. Humans have feelings and emotions and robots don’t”, he said.

A debate on the impact of artificial intelligence was held involving the representatives of several successful Portuguese companies: Nuno Flores, CEO of Introsys, Gil Sousa, representative of Kuka Robotics, Pedro Torres from Vision- Box, Pedro Bizarro, co-founder of Feedzai, José Rui Felizardo, CEO of CEiiA and Vasco Portugal from Sensei. The future challenges, employability, business opportunities, legislation and regulation on technological changes were some of the topics discussed.

The Ministry of Economy, Manuel Caldeira Cabral, closed the session. “Artificial Intelligence will allow companies to obtain or sustain a competitive advantage”, he noted. “Digital will have a significant impact on many areas and we must be prepared for it”, he concluded.