A very exciting topic and one of our most anticipated events for the second half of the year – the ‘Emotional Intelligence in the Digital World’ event happened last week, and it was a great combination of learning and conversations. What made it most interesting was the fact that every person at the event could use the learning from the event in a different way. It is one of those topics which is equally important for all of us, whether you work independently, are in a full-time job, use the internet for work or only for fun!
The speakers were some fabulous ladies and they really gave participants something to think about. There was Marina Andrieu Thiriet who is the co-founder and director of WIDE which is a non-profit organization started in Luxembourg in 2013, that focuses on empowering women and helping them seize opportunities in the digital space. Marina, whose 4-year-old daughter attended the event with her, is a force to reckon with and set up the first coding classes for women here in Luxembourg!
She talked to participants about the future of work and humanity and how new technologies are changing these landscapes. She also talked about the ‘4 Cs’ and the competencies of the future – creativity, communication, confidence and coding. She shared an interesting concept a lady developed, about a future with 48 hours of work in a week (yes, you read that right, 48 not 40!) which would be spent across working, training and community service. Marina believes the new generation of children are comfortable and well prepared to work closely with Artificial Intelligence and she went on to tell everyone how her daughter already thinks of vending machines and navigation systems as actual people!
Besides Marina, we were fortunate to have Amal Tawakuli as a speaker. Amal is a PhD Student at the University of Luxembourg and her areas of research include data management, parallel and distributed computing and stream data processing. Amal broke down Artificial Intelligence for attendees, explaining how often we interact with AI without even realizing and recognizing it as such. She talked all about gadgets with Artificial Intelligence, both in the future and those that are already part of our lives. Amal says, “AI is already here!” and we can’t help but agree.
She told participants about the latest in technology from automatic lawn mowers to assisted driving to smart pajamas, gadgets that would monitor everything from our heart rate to our groceries to what has expired in our fridges! As Amal explained it, “Today you take care of your homes but in the future, your homes will look after you!” It was reassuring for many participants (and us, we have to admit) to hear Amal tell us how our fears of robots replacing us could be unnecessary. She feels robots and Artificial Intelligence should be viewed more as facilitators and not threats.
Across the sessions with both these lovely speakers, participants had a chance to get into discussion groups and share, discuss and debate their thoughts on this very polarizing topic.
We are very grateful to our hosts at Amazon for helping us make this event happen and while we think about how technology does and will help us in the future, we are also getting set for our next event in November which is dedicated to helping women’s charities in Luxembourg.
We look forward to seeing you there!