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

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.


Recognising ADM+S Researchers for International Women’s Day 2023

Recognising ADM+S Researchers for International Women’s Day 2023

Author Natalie Campbell
Date 8 March 2023

The ADM+S Centre is celebrating International Women’s Day 2023 by recognising the work of some of our fantastic community members working in the fields of STEM, AI, and ADM research.

The UN’s 2023 theme of ‘DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality’, aims to highlight how women are disproportionately affected by the negative effects of emerging digital technologies, and advocate for change in this area.

At ADM+S, we recognise that racism, colonialism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, and ableism are principal obstacles to equity, diversity and inclusion, and remain primary causes of injustice and inequality. We believe that gender equality for all means equality for marginalised groups, and that the cause of gender equality includes the experiences of Indigenous and POC women, and transgender and non-binary people.

Today, we highlight some of the interdisciplinary researchers and students at ADM+S researching representation, women in AI, gender-based violence, and more.


Le (Lesley) Luo, PhD Candidate | Swinburne University

Le’s research aims to explore whether and how YouTube’s queer content producers and audience represent and recognise their gender identities and sexualities within narrative content. Proposed methods include content analyses of YouTube content and comments, and interviews with content producers. Key areas of focus include cross-cultural and cross-platform negotiations of queer visibility; and whether and how platform recommender systems impact on producers and audiences as they negotiate representation practices.

Marwah Alaofi, PhD Candidate | RMIT University

Marwah’s research seeks to investigate ways to understand the variability of users and quantify its impact on search engines’ retrieval effectiveness, particularly in the context of complex answer retrieval. That is, given the same information need, how variable user queries are, and how robust answer retrieval models are in response to that variability. It seeks to further understand how model effectiveness is linked to different query properties.

During the first year of her Ph.D., she was awarded the industry impact award at CReD’22 for her poster titled “In Search for Answers: User Variability and Retrieval Consistency”. She published and presented my research at the Doctoral Consortium at SIGIR’22 held in Madrid (a top-tier Information Retrieval conference). She also enjoys a bit of a challenge outside her thesis. With her team, she won first place in the AI for Mental Health Datathon co-organized by RMIT and Cogniant and she had ‘an unusual’ go at communicating her research through baking her Ph.D. for the “Bake your Ph.D.” competition.

Trang Le, PhD Candidate | Monash University

Trang’s research sits at the intersection of media technologies, feminism, space/place, and datafication. Her current project looks at data-driven solutions to women’s safety in public space, asking how these reconfigure our understanding of space and what this might mean for the feminist struggle for spatial justice.

Recent Publications
Crowdsourcing Women’s Experiences of Space: Empowerment, (In)Visibility, and Exclusions -A Critical Reading of Safetipin Map

Upcoming Presentations
Trang will be presenting at the upcoming Algorithms for Her? 2 conference. The presentation is titled “Tracking gender balance: What are the problems represented to be?”. The paper examines gender balance trackers that use machine learning techniques such as natural language processing and image recognition to rate how balanced media content, be it a news article or an ad, is, in terms of their representation of women.

Trang has also received a travel grant to Monash University Prato in Italy in June 2023 to attend a writing and publishing workshop. For this workshop, she will be working on one of her thesis chapters and learning the skills to adapt a thesis chapter into a journal article.

Lucinda Nelson, PhD Candidate | Queensland University of Technology

Lucinda’s PhD project examines the way misogyny manifests in ordinary, everyday language in discourses around gender-based violence on social media platforms. She is looking at the response to the Depp v Heard defamation trial as a case study. Lucinda is particularly interested in the ways that notions of due process and rational debate are used to mask and deny misogynistic beliefs and behaviours.

Dr Thao Phan, Research Fellow | Monash University

Thao Phan is a feminist technoscience researcher who specialises in the study of gender and race in algorithmic culture.

Recent Publications
Amazon Echo and the Aesethetics of Whiteness (Winner of the 2019 Nicholas C. Mullins Award and Australian Women and Gender Studies Most Distinguished Paper Award)
The Materiality of the Digital and the Gendered Voice of Siri
Programming gender: surveillance, identity, and paranoia in Ex Machina

Recent and Upcoming Presentations
Thao recently gave the closing lecture Listening to Misrecognition as part of the Data Relations summer school at the Australian Centre for Contemporary Art.

Thao is also giving talks in April at the UQ Fitter, Happier, more Productive symposium and the ADM+S Automated Space workshop.

Cecily Klim, PhD Candidate | UNSW Sydney

Cecily Klim (she/her) is a CoE ADM+S PhD student at UNSW under the supervision of Professor Deborah Lupton. She has a BA(Hons) in Sustainable Development from The University of Edinburgh, and an MA in Visual Anthropology and MSc in Social Research, both from Goldsmiths College, University of London. Her academic background has provided a springboard from which to explore STS, feminist theory, and the sociology of health with an interdisciplinary and future-oriented logic. Cecily is particularly interested in the politics of representation and, having worked with film, sound, storytelling, and arts workshops, she is dedicated to the use and development of creative and arts-based methods for social research and public engagement.

Read more about ADM+S researchers.

Learn more about the UN’s theme of DigitALL: Innovation and technology for gender equality.