Sydney Innovation Program participants at the formal dinner
Credit: Riley Vaughan, University of Sydney

ADM+S partners with Sydney Law School to present the 2023 Sydney Innovation Program

Author Natalie Campbell
Date 27 March 2023

In February 2023, the ARC Centre of Excellence for Automated Decision Making and Society (ADM+S) partnered with Sydney Law School to deliver the Sydney Innovation Program, bringing together a diverse and interdisciplinary group of students to critically investigate automated solutions in finance, justice, sustainability, and healthcare.

ADM+S Research Fellow Dr Jose-Miguel Bello y Villarino was a co-convenor of the 2023 program, and a mentor for the students throughout the process.

“It does not stop surprising me how much participants evolve in their views, attitude and knowledge in such a short period of time,” he said.

To kick off the program, the ADM+S Centre provided information and materials to all participants to consider key priorities when developing automated solutions. ADM+S Chief Investigator Prof Kimberlee Weatherall also contributed to the program, highlighting a regulatory perspective on ADM innovations with a presentation on ‘Responsible Automation’.

Amongst the winning team of six was ADM+S alumni Arundhati Ajith. Arundhati’s team developed a proposal to incorporate automated decision-making (ADM) in beach lifesaving to identify rips, dangerous surf conditions and drownings. Their concept used computer vision and machine learning to assist lifesavers in their efforts to patrol hazardous conditions and struggling swimmers along expansive sealines; all critical issues contributing to Australia’s alarming number of ocean drownings.

Arundhati Ajith was a 2022 ADM+S Summer Research Assistant Program member, leveraging that experience and innovative mindset to develop a winning idea, and lead her team’s final presentation.

“The interdisciplinary nature of the program encouraged us to work with people from vastly different academic backgrounds, who have different approaches to solving the same problem.

It was the knowledge sharing facilitated by the Sydney Innovation Program and ADM+S that ultimately led to our success, and continues to inform our business going forward,” she said.

The three-week program culminated in a presentation to an expert panel, including the Honourable Justice François Kunc of the Supreme Court of NSW, Helen Mayhew, Partner at QuantumBlack, AI by McKinsey, Professor Bronitt, Dean of Sydney law SchoolProfessor, and ADM+S Chief Investigator Professor Flora Salim.

Members of the winning team received a four-month residency and membership with the Sydney Knowledge Hub.


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