MIT Media Lab
AI and robotics are driving rapid and radical workplace transformation across all industries, for companies large and small. These and other emerging technologies, like advanced manufacturing and AR/VR, are changing jobs ranging from manufacturing to medicine to retail.
EmTech Next will examine the technology behind these global trends and their implications for the future of work. It will delve into their potential to empower the human workforce and open up new areas of economic growth, while also exploring their unintended consequences.
How can businesses better use artificial intelligence?
How will you prepare your workforce for the jobs of the future?
What skills will be valued in this new era?
How can you stay agile and steer your career through this time of unprecedented change?
» Artificial Intelligence and its impact on businesses
» Robots as your coworkers
» The digital factory and 3-D printing
» VR/AR in the workplace
» The skill gap myth—or rethinking retraining
» Job displacement and labor disruption
EmTech Next: Prepare for the future of work
MIT Technology Review events consistently attract senior-level business and technology decision makers who drive the global innovation economy.
EmTech is a must-attend for:
- C-Level Executives
- Policy Leaders
- Tech Media
- Venture Investors
- IP Professionals
The innovators at the heart of the next wave of the digital revolution are here.
Professor of Economics, MIT
AI's Economic ImpactDaron Acemoglu is Elizabeth and James Killian Professor of Economics in the Department of Economics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He received a BA in economics at the University of York, 1989, an MS in mathematical economics and econometrics at the London School of Economics, 1990, and a PhD in economics at the London School of Economics in 1992.
Acemoglu’s areas of research include political economy, economic development and growth, human capital theory, growth theory, innovation, search theory, network economics, and learning. His recent research focuses on the political, economic and social causes of differences in economic development across societies; the factors affecting the institutional and political evolution of nations; and how technology impacts growth and distribution of resources and is itself determined by economic and social incentives.
President, Northeastern University
Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial IntelligenceJoseph E. Aoun is the seventh president of Northeastern University. A leader in higher-education policy and an internationally renowned scholar in linguistics, Aoun came to Northeastern from the University of Southern California's College of Letters, Arts & Sciences, where he was the inaugural holder of the Anna H. Bing Dean's Chair. He received his PhD in linguistics and philosophy from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and advanced degrees from the University of Paris (France) VIII and Saint Joseph University (Beirut, Lebanon). He has published eight books and written more than 40 articles. His latest book is Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial Intelligence.
Delta Electronics Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, MIT
AI for Personalized Health CareRegina Barzilay is a professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a member of the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her research interests are in natural language processing and applications of deep learning to chemistry and oncology. She is a recipient of the NSF Career Award, MIT Technology Review Innovator Under 35 recognition, a Microsoft Faculty Fellowship, and several Best Paper Awards at NAACL and ACL. In 2017, she received a MacArthur fellowship, an ACL fellowship, and an AAAI fellowship. She received her PhD in computer science from Columbia University and spent a year as a postdoc at Cornell University.
Cofounder and CTO, Kindred.ai
Imagining the Jobs of the Future: Robot PilotsJames Bergstra is cofounder and head of AI and research at Kindred.ai. Research at Kindred is focused on developing new learning techniques for robots and applying these techniques in the company’s current and future products. Before cofounding Kindred, he was a Banting Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Waterloo and a research scholar at Harvard University. Many researchers have used the Theano and Hyperopt software packages that James developed as a graduate student and postgraduate researcher.
James was granted a PhD in machine learning by the University of Montreal in 2011 for his work in bio-inspired non-linearities in deep networks, hyperparameter optimization, and creation of the Theano deep-learning library.
Chief Technologist, Amazon Robotics
Robots in the Workforce: The Benefits of Human and Robot CollaborationTye Brady is a leading strategic thinker and engineering professional with more than 25 years of hands-on experience in team leadership, technical management, and system design for advanced instrumentation, autonomous vehicles, and robotic systems. Tye is chief technologist at Amazon Robotics, where he heads advanced technology and research efforts. Before joining Amazon, Tye spent 15 years with Draper Laboratory in a variety of technical and leadership roles, advancing robotics and spacecraft engineering. He holds a master’s degree in aeronautics and astronautics engineering from MIT. Tye is a founding partner of MassRobotics, a not-for-profit organization serving as a world-class platform for robotic innovation.
CEO and Publisher, MIT Technology ReviewElizabeth Bramson-Boudreau is the CEO and publisher of MIT Technology Review, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s media company. MIT Technology Review’s analysis, features, interviews, and events explain the impact of new technologies on business and society.
Elizabeth is leading the growth, expansion, and modernization of MIT Technology Review’s media platforms and products, including U.S. and international websites, newsletters, events, and an award-winning print magazine. Elizabeth also serves as chair of the global entrepreneurial network MIT Enterprise Forum.
Elizabeth has a 20-year background in building and running teams at world-leading media companies. She maintains a keen focus on new ways to commercialize media content to appeal to discerning, demanding consumers as well as B2B audiences.
Prior to joining MIT Technology Review, Elizabeth was the global managing director of the Economist Corporate Network (whose parent company publishes The Economist magazine), where she led editorial content creation, sales, marketing, and event operations. She also spent a decade working as a consultant.
Elizabeth holds an executive MBA from the London Business School, an MSc from the London School of Economics, and a bachelor’s degree from Swarthmore College.
Director, Vrai Pictures
Engineering Creativity: Machines as Co-creatorsJessica Brillhart is a film director widely known for her pioneering work in virtual reality. She is the director and founder of Vrai Pictures. As Google's principal filmmaker, she was the first to field-test Google Jump. She has made a number of critically acclaimed experiences, including World Tour, Go Habs Go! Resonance, and DeepDream VR Experiments. Her work also dives into a number of important medium and media-related issues, such as disability (Beethoven's Fifth), cultural representation (Navajo Nation), and access (Conditions at Omaha: The Weather Channel in VR). Brillhart has taken the stage at Google IO, Oculus Connect, and the New Yorker TechFest and has worked as an advisor for Sundance New Frontiers and IFP. Her Medium publication The Language of VR has been used by universities, various other education programs, and creators from all over the world.
Principal, Store N° 8
Walmart’s Store No. 8: Transforming the Future of RetailKatie Finnegan is Principal of Store N° 8, Walmart’s incubation arm for uncovering ideas that will transform the future of commerce. From sitting in on conference calls starting at age 8 with her retail executive dad to early days in merchandising with J.Crew, Katie has always had a passion for retail and building. Prior to the formation of Store No 8, Katie was Head of Corp Dev, IR and Strategy for Jet, reporting directly to CEO Marc Lore. Katie joined Jet in 2014 with the acquisition of Hukkster, the retail tech start-up she co-founded in 2012. Katie holds an MBA in Corporate Strategy and Finance from Duke University. A proud Colgate alum, Katie is a founding chair of the Colgate Entrepreneurship Network, recipient of the Ann Yao ’80 Alumni award and 2015 recipient of the Maroon Citation.
Chairman and CEO, Deloitte Consulting
Executive Insights on the Future of Work, Presented by DeloitteJanet Foutty is the chairman and chief executive officer of Deloitte Consulting, leading an $8 billion business whose more than 40,000 professionals help Fortune 500 companies and government agencies translate complex issues into opportunity.
Janet is a frequent author and popular public speaker who regularly communicates with executive-level audiences about the changing business landscape, the C-suite of tomorrow, the multigenerational workforce, tech disruption, and leadership. She is a passionate advocate for inclusion in the workplace; women in technology and government; veterans’ issues; and the need for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. Janet has founded groups focused on women in technology in India and the United States.
Professor of the Practice of Economic Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
Automation and the Future of Work: Will This Time Be Different?Jason Furman is a professor of the practice of economic policy at Harvard Kennedy School (HKS). He is also nonresident senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. A top economic advisor for eight years to President Obama, he served as chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers from August 2013 to January 2017. Previously Furman held a variety of posts in public policy and research. In public policy, he worked at the Council of Economic Advisers and the National Economic Council during the Clinton administration, and also at the World Bank. In research, he was a director of the Hamilton Project and a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, and he has served in visiting positions at various universities, including NYU's Wagner Graduate School of Public Policy. Furman has conducted research in a wide range of areas, including fiscal policy, tax policy, health economics, Social Security, technology policy, and domestic and international macroeconomics. In addition to articles in scholarly journals and periodicals, he is the editor of two books on economic policy. He holds a PhD in economics from Harvard University.
CEO, IAM Robotics
Solving the Manual Labor ShortageTom is the founder and CEO of IAM Robotics. He has over 15 years of experience in autonomous robotics. Previously, Tom worked with Carnegie Mellon University, Harris Corporation, the Air Force Research Laboratory, Boeing, and other organizations. During his career, Tom developed autonomous systems for air, land, and sea. He built robots to compete in major competitions including the Intelligent Ground Vehicle Competition and the DARPA Grand Challenge. Several of Tom's robots have won in the areas of navigation, autonomy, and design. Tom also cofounded OpenJAUS, a technology company that develops software for the joint architecture for unmanned systems. OpenJAUS is the market leader in providing JAUS solutions to the defense industry. Tom holds a PhD in robotics from the University of Florida and a BS in aerospace engineering from Embry Riddle Aeronautical University, with minors in computer science and mathematics.
Digital HKS Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School
Engaging People in Crafting the Future of WorkJenn Gustetic is a 2017-2018 digital Harvard Kennedy School visiting fellow. She is also currently the program executive for the Small Business Innovation Research program (SBIR) at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. She served as assistant director for open innovation at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and is a leader in the federal open innovation community, having served as the program executive for prizes and challenges at NASA and cochair of the interagency Maker working group. She has published numerous writings on innovation in space policy and other areas, and on issues in science and technology. She holds a master's degree from MIT in technology policy and a bachelor's degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Florida.
Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, MIT; Cofounder, Desktop Metal
Reimagining the Factory FloorJohn Hart is an associate professor of mechanical engineering and Mitsui Career Development Chair at MIT. Before joining the MIT faculty in July 2013 he was an assistant professor of mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, and art/design at the University of Michigan. He has PhD (2006) and SM (2002) degrees from MIT, and a BSE (2000) from Michigan, all in mechanical engineering. At MIT, John leads the Mechanosynthesis Group, which creates new machines, materials, and design principles for advanced manufacturing, including carbon nanomaterials, additive manufacturing processes, and origami-inspired materials design.
Cochair, Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics, City of Boston
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Nigel Jacob is the cofounder of the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, a civic innovation incubator and R&D Lab within Boston’s City Hall. Nigel’s work is about making urban life better via innovative, people-oriented applications of technology and design. Before joining the City of Boston in 2006, Nigel worked in a series of technology startups in the Boston area.
He was also previously the Urban Technologist in Residence at Living Cities, a philanthropic collaboration of 22 of the world’s largest foundations and financial institutions. He is currently a board member at organizations such as Code For America and coUrbanize, and he serves as executive-in-residence at Boston University.
Senior Editor for AI, MIT Technology ReviewWill Knight is a senior editor at MIT Technology Review, covering artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotics, self-driving cars, and human-machine collaboration. Will grew up in London, and was previously an editor at New Scientist magazine in the UK.
Deputy Assistant to the President for Technology Policy, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
A View from the White HouseMichael Kratsios is Deputy Assistant to the President for Technology Policy at the White House. Michael advises the President on a broad range of technology policy issues and drives U.S. technology priorities and strategic initiatives. Under his leadership, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy encourages the development of emerging technologies in the United States, empowers American companies to commercialize and adopt new technologies, and improves and expands access to the tools necessary for Americans to succeed in the 21st century economy. His office is also responsible for aligning the development of new technologies with the Administration's priorities, including standing up for the American worker, defending American innovations abroad, and protecting the safety and security of the American people. Prior to joining the White House, Michael was a Principal at Thiel Capital, where he invested in and advised technology companies. Michael graduated from Princeton University and served as a Visiting Scholar at Beijing's Tsinghua University.
Editor in Chief, MIT Technology ReviewGideon Lichfield has been the editor-in-chief of MIT Technology Review since December 2017. He spent 16 years at The Economist, first as a science and technology writer and then in postings to Mexico City, Moscow, Jerusalem, and New York City. In 2012 he left to become one of the founding editors of Quartz, a news outlet dedicated to covering the future of the global economy that is now widely recognized as one of the most innovative companies in digital media. Gideon has taught journalism at New York University and been a fellow at Data & Society, a research institute devoted to studying the social impacts of new technology. He grew up in the UK and studied physics and the philosophy of science.
Founder and CEO, Markforged
The Next Generation of 3-D PrintingGreg Mark is the founder and CEO of Markforged, a Boston-based manufacturer of industrial 3-D printers. Greg is an aerospace engineer and entrepreneur. After getting a getting a BS and MS in aeronautics and astronautics from MIT, he started and sold two companies, including Aeromotions, where he designed and manufactured high-performance, computer-controlled composite race car wings. Greg understood the challenges of manufacturing composites, and in 2013 he founded Markforged, which introduced the world’s first process for 3-D-printing composite structures that include continuous carbon fiber. As the CEO of Markforged, Greg has led the company to rapid worldwide growth.
Senior Fellow, Harvard Business School
MIT Work of the Future: Perspectives from Business and EconomicsKaren Gordon Mills is a senior fellow at the Harvard Business School and an authority on US competitiveness, small business, and innovation. She was a member of President Barack Obama's cabinet, serving as administrator of the US Small Business Administration from 2009 to 2013. She is a leading expert on the growth, disruption, and impact of fintech and its implications for regulation, customer experience ,and artificial intelligence. Karen has been recognized for her work on regional innovation clusters as a strategy for driving job creation and productivity at a time of increased global economic transition, and her recent research with Mercedes Delgado of the MIT Sloan School of Management proposed a new categorization of the nation’s supply-chain industries and their critical role in innovation and economic performance. She also contributed to the US Competitiveness Project’s report, The Challenge of Shared Prosperity (2015).
Chair, MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of AutonomyDavid is a professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT, the Dibner Professor of the History of Engineering and Manufacturing, and chair of the MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future. An expert on the myriad relationships between people and autonomous robots, he has participated in more than 25 oceanographic expeditions and developed and licensed spread-spectrum sonar technologies for undersea navigation. He is the author of five books, including Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of Autonomy (2015) and Digital Apollo: Human and Machine in Spaceflight (2008). David has a BS in electrical engineering from Yale, a BA in literature from Yale, and a PhD in the history of technology from MIT.
Associate Professor, MIT
A Regional Reality Check: Mapping Automation-Proof Jobs and SkillsIyad Rahwan is an associate professor at the MIT Media Lab, where he leads the Scalable Cooperation group. A native of Aleppo, Syria, Rahwan holds a PhD from the University of Melbourne, Australia, and is an affiliate faculty at the MIT Institute of Data, Systems, and Society. Rahwan’s work lies at the intersection of computer science and the social sciences, with a focus on collective intelligence, large-scale cooperation, and the social aspects of artificial intelligence. He led the winning team in the U.S. State Department’s Tag Challenge, using social media to locate individuals in remote cities within 12 hours using only their mug shots. Recently, he crowdsourced 30 million decisions from people worldwide about the ethics of AI systems. Rahwan’s work has appeared in major academic journals, including Science and PNAS, and features regularly in major media outlets, including the New York Times, the Economist, and the Wall Street Journal.
Executive Director, MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Elisabeth Reynolds is executive director of the MIT Industrial Performance Center (IPC), a multidisciplinary research center that focuses on firms, industries, and technological change in the global economy and how their emergence and transformation impact society at large. Her work has focused in particular on industry cluster development and regional innovation ecosystems, and she advises several organizations in this area. Her current research focuses on advanced manufacturing, growing innovative companies to scale, and building innovation capacity in emerging economies. She is co-leading, with Professors David Mindell and David Autor, the recently announced MIT Work of the Future initiative. Before coming to MIT for her PhD, Liz was director of the City Advisory Practice at the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC), a nonprofit founded by Professor Michael Porter of HBS focused on job and business growth in in older industrial cities. She is a lecturer in MIT’s Department of Urban Studies.
Editor, MIT Technology ReviewDavid Rotman is the editor of MIT Technology Review. He supervises editorial for both the print magazine and the website. A science and business journalist, he has written extensively on chemistry, biotechnology, materials science, and environmental issues. He joined MIT Technology Review in January 1998 as a senior editor covering nanotechnology. Before joining MIT Technology Review, Rotman was managing senior editor at Chemical Week magazine in New York City, where he supervised coverage of technology, research, and environmental issues. He has a BS degree from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst.
Vice President for Open Learning, MIT
The Future of EducationSanjay Sarma is vice president for open learning at MIT and leads its Office of Digital Learning, which oversees MIT OpenCourseWare and supports the development and use of digital technology for on-campus teaching and massive open online courses (MOOCs). He is also the Fred Fort Flowers (1941) and Daniel Fort Flowers (1941) Professor of Mechanical Engineering.
A cofounder of the Auto-ID Center at MIT, Sarma developed many of the key technologies behind the EPC suite of RFID standards now used worldwide. He serves on the boards of GS1, EPCglobal, several startup companies including Senaya and ESSESS, and edX, the not-for-profit company set up by MIT and Harvard to create and promulgate an open-source platform for the distribution of free online education worldwide. He also advises several national governments and global companies.
Author of more than 75 academic papers in computational geometry, sensing, RFID, automation, and CAD, Sarma is the recipient of numerous awards for teaching and research, including the MacVicar Fellowship, the BusinessWeek eBiz Award, and InformationWeek's Innovators and Influencers Award. He received his bachelor's degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, his master's degree from Carnegie Mellon University, and his PhD from the University of California at Berkeley.
Associate Professor, MIT
Robot See, Robot Do: Exploring Human-Machine CollaborationJulie Shah is an associate professor of aeronautics and astronautics at MIT and director of the Interactive Robotics Group, which aims to imagine the future of work by designing collaborative robot teammates that enhance human capability. She is expanding the use of human cognitive models for artificial intelligence and has translated her work to manufacturing assembly lines, health-care applications, transportation, and defense. Before joining the faculty, she worked at Boeing Research and Technology on robotics applications for aerospace manufacturing. Professor Shah has been recognized by the National Science Foundation with a Faculty Early Career Development award and by MIT Technology Review on its 35 Innovators Under 35 list. Her work on industrial human-robot collaboration was also in Technology Review’s 2013 list of 10 Breakthrough Technologies. She has received international recognition in the form of best paper awards and nominations from the ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human-Robot Interaction, the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics, the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, the International Conference on Automated Planning and Scheduling, and the International Symposium on Robotics. She earned degrees in aeronautics and astronautics and in autonomous systems from MIT.
Managing Workforce Evolution in a Time of Technology-Driven ChangeBrad Smith is responsible for Microsoft’s corporate, external, and legal affairs and oversees a team of more than 1,400 business, legal, and corporate professionals working in 55 countries. In this role, he leads the company’s work on a number of critical issues including cybersecurity, digital privacy, public policy and government affairs, intellectual property, accessibility, philanthropy, and environmental sustainability. As president, he has also spearheaded programs and initiatives aimed at increasing economic development and opportunity and to ensuring that all of society benefits from technology’s advances.
Institute Professor Emeritus, MIT
MIT Work of the Future: Perspectives from Business and EconomicsRobert Solow is an MIT Institute Professor emeritus and one of the world’s leading economic theorists. In addition to having received honorary degrees from 20 international universities, Professor Solow is the recipient of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Science for his contributions to the theory of capital and economic growth. Professor Solow’s government service includes positions as senior economist for the Council of Economic Advisers and member of the President’s Commission on Income Maintenance.
Assistant Professor, Brown University
Beyond the Code: Next-Generation Human-Machine InterfacesStefanie Tellex is the Joukowsky Family Assistant Professor of Computer Science and Assistant Professor of Engineering at Brown University. Her group, the Humans to Robots Lab, creates robots that seamlessly collaborate with people to meet their needs using language, gesture, and probabilistic inference, aiming to empower every person with a collaborative robot. She completed her PhD in 2010 at the MIT Media Lab, where she developed models for the meanings of spatial prepositions and motion verbs. Her postdoctoral work at MIT CSAIL focused on creating robots that understand natural language. She has published at SIGIR, HRI, RSS, AAAI, IROS, ICAPs and ICMI, winning Best Student Paper at SIGIR and ICMI, Best Paper at RSS, and an award from the CCC Blue Sky Ideas Initiative. Named one of IEEE Spectrum’s “AI’s 10 to Watch” in 2013, she has also received the Richard B. Salomon Faculty Research Award at Brown University, a DARPA Young Faculty Award in 2015, a NASA Early Career Award in 2016, a 2016 Sloan Research Fellowship, and an NSF Career Award in 2017. Her work has been featured on National Public Radio and the BBC, as well as in MIT Technology Review, Wired, Wired UK, and the New Yorker. She was named one of Wired UK’s Women Who Changed Science In 2015 and featured in MIT Technology Review’s 10 Breakthrough Technologies in 2016.
Professor, Carnegie Mellon University
Next-Generation Robots Need Your HelpManuela M. Veloso is the Herbert A. Simon University Professor in the Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science and the current head of the university’s machine learning department. She founded and directs the CORAL research laboratory for the study of autonomous agents that collaborate, observe, reason, act, and learn. Professor Veloso is an ACM Fellow, IEEE Fellow, AAAS Fellow, AAAI Fellow, and the past president of AAAI and cofounder and past president of RoboCup. She received the 2009 ACM/SIGART Autonomous Agents Research Award for her work on agents in uncertain and dynamic environments. Professor Veloso and her students have worked with a variety of autonomous robots, including mobile service robots and soccer robots.
CEO, Fetch Robotics
Affordable Robots for the Warehouse and BeyondMelonee Wise is CEO of Fetch Robotics, which is delivering advanced robots for the logistics industry. The company introduced its robot system, including Fetch and Freight, in May 2015. Before joining Fetch, Wise was cofounder and CEO of Unbounded Robotic; previously, she was manager of robot development at Willow Garage, where she led a team of engineers developing next-generation robot hardware, including the PR2 and TurtleBot. She also has extensive experience in the growth of ROS (the Robot Operating System) as a research and commercial platform. She is currently a mentor in the Qualcomm Robotics Accelerator. She received bachelor's degrees in mechanical and physics engineering and a master's degree in mechanical engineering, all from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Director, Technology & Civic Engagement, Microsoft
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Cathy Wissink is the Director of Civic Engagement for Microsoft in Pittsburgh. Her job focuses on partnering with civic leaders in greater Pittsburgh to use technology to solve challenges and capitalize on impactful and inclusive opportunities. Cathy works directly with local nonprofits, tech leaders and policy influencers on issues critical to the community, Microsoft and the tech sector. Cathy joined Microsoft in 2000 and spent her first 9 years working in Windows Engineering, focusing on software globalization and helping ensure diverse countries were on the right side of the digital divide. She moved to the Corporate, External and Legal Affairs team at Microsoft in 2009, working on global government affairs, then was recruited to pilot the new Civic Engagement team in Boston in 2013. When the team expanded its footprint in late 2017, Cathy took on the project of building out Microsoft’s civic engagement in a new city and moved to Pittsburgh in November of the same year. Cathy is a Seattle native and is enjoying exploring her adopted city.
Senior Editor for Business, MIT Technology ReviewAs the senior editor for business, Elizabeth Woyke is focused on writing stories that explore the important question: what is the future of work when AI, automation, and on-demand services are altering how we define what a job is and who qualifies as an employee? Other areas of interest include new models for workforce training and education, how companies are increasing employee diversity and inclusion, and startups that are developing innovative workplace tools and technologies. Elizabeth began her career at Time Asia, followed by staff jobs at BusinessWeek and Forbes. More recently, she co-authored an e-book for O’Reilly Media about the gig economy and wrote a book called The Smartphone: Anatomy of an Industry, which was published in 2014.
EmTech Next 2018 Schedule
It’s not another lecture … it’s an invitation to join the conversation.
Monday, June 4, 2018
8:00Registration & Breakfast
A welcome from MIT Technology Review’s editor in chief, our EmTech Next emcee.Gideon Lichfield Editor in Chief, MIT Technology Review
9:15Reimagining Work in a Time of Unprecedented Change
We are witnessing an era of rapid technological change unlike any before it. This era has the potential to empower the human workforce and open up new areas of economic growth, but not without unintended consequences.Tye Brady Chief Technologist, Amazon Robotics
Robots in the Workforce: The Benefits of Human and Robot CollaborationDavid Mindell Chair, MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of Autonomy
10:30Break & Networking
11:00The Automation Angst
As automation is more widely adopted, what are the real implications for jobs?Stefanie Tellex Assistant Professor, Brown University
Beyond the Code: Next-Generation Human-Machine InterfacesIyad Rahwan Associate Professor, MIT
A Regional Reality Check: Mapping Automation-Proof Jobs and SkillsJason Furman Professor of the Practice of Economic Policy, Harvard Kennedy School
Automation and the Future of Work: Will This Time Be Different?
12:30Networking Lunch & Special Session, hosted by Deloitte
Executive Insights on the Future of Work
The future of work is upon us. This means that - because of the convergence of new technology, changing demographics, and shifting power dynamics in our society - jobs are changing. And so is the relationship between employer and employee. How do we lead the redesign of work, the workforce, and the workplace for our own organizations? In a world of point solutions, it will take an integrated approach to deliver the most exceptional results. Join Janet Foutty, Chairman and CEO of Deloitte Consulting, to discuss what organizations need to be thinking about in terms of leadership, talent and skills, and technology to keep pace with the exponential change in how we work.Janet Foutty Chairman and CEO, Deloitte Consulting
Executive Insights on the Future of Work, Presented by Deloitte
2:00In Machines We Trust
How will tomorrow's workers collaborate more naturally with intelligent systems? As intelligent systems are taught to work more naturally with humans, what must humans learn?Joseph Aoun President, Northeastern University
Robot-Proof: Higher Education in the Age of Artificial IntelligenceJulie Shah Associate Professor, MIT
Robot See, Robot Do: Exploring Human-Machine CollaborationMelonee Wise CEO, Fetch Robotics
Affordable Robots for the Warehouse and Beyond
3:30Break & Networking
4:00A Look Ahead: Jobs of the Future
How will we reimagine the workforce of the future?Jenn Gustetic Digital HKS Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School
Engaging People in Crafting the Future of WorkJames Bergstra Cofounder and CTO, Kindred.ai
Imagining the Jobs of the Future: Robot PilotsJohn Hart Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, MIT; Cofounder, Desktop Metal
Reimagining the Factory Floor
5:25Engineering Creativity: Machines as Co-creatorsJessica Brillhart Director, Vrai Pictures
Engineering Creativity: Machines as Co-creators
5:45EmTech Next Reception
Hosted by Deloitte
Tuesday, June 5, 2018
8:00Registration & Breakfast
Day Two opens with a preview of the day from MIT Technology Review’s editor in chief, our EmTech emcee.Gideon Lichfield Editor in Chief, MIT Technology Review
How will intelligent machines augment and enhance human capabilities in the workplace?Manuela Veloso Professor, Carnegie Mellon University
Next-Generation Robots Need Your HelpRegina Barzilay Delta Electronics Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, MIT
AI for Personalized Health Care
9:55MIT Work of the Future: Perspectives from Business and EconomicsDavid Mindell Chair, MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Our Robots, Ourselves: Robotics and the Myths of AutonomyKaren Mills Senior Fellow, Harvard Business School
MIT Work of the Future: Perspectives from Business and EconomicsRobert M. Solow Institute Professor Emeritus, MIT
MIT Work of the Future: Perspectives from Business and Economics
10:30Break & Networking
11:00Empowering the Workforce of Tomorrow
Preparing today’s workforce for the jobs of tomorrow will require new kinds of collaboration between corporate leaders, educators, and policy makers.Brad Smith President, Microsoft
Managing Workforce Evolution in a Time of Technology-Driven ChangeSanjay Sarma Vice President for Open Learning, MIT
The Future of EducationMichael Kratsios Deputy Assistant to the President for Technology Policy, White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
A View from the White House
12:30Lunch & Networking
What industries are poised to experience disruption from the latest advancements in AI and robotics? We examine insights from organizations that are leading their industries into this new era.Katie Finnegan Principal, Store N° 8
Walmart’s Store No. 8: Transforming the Future of RetailGreg Mark Founder and CEO, Markforged
The Next Generation of 3-D PrintingTom Galluzzo CEO, IAM Robotics
Solving the Manual Labor Shortage
3:00Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Elisabeth B. Reynolds Executive Director, MIT Task Force on the Work of the Future
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Nigel Jacob Cochair, Mayor's Office of New Urban Mechanics, City of Boston
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?Cathy Wissink Director, Technology & Civic Engagement, Microsoft
Technology, Work, and Urban Ecosystems: How Should Cities and Regions Respond?
3:30Break & Networking
4:00Owning Our Future: New Opportunities in the Era of Automation
What are the social and economic implications of emerging technologies?Daron Acemoglu Professor of Economics, MIT
AI's Economic Impact
4:30The Path Forward
How can we ensure that everyone benefits from the promise of AI?
News + Views
The woman organizing our messy digital lives to survive us.
The future of home movies is shooting them in 3-D and playing them back in VR.
Come, let us feed virtual tigers digital cake in real-world locations until the end of time.
To make AI programs smarter, researchers are creating virtual worlds for them to explore.
Venue + Travel
June 4-5, 2018
MIT Media Lab
EmTech Next happens at the MIT Media Lab in the heart of the MIT campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Here you can't help but feel the excitement and inspiration of being at the top university in the world, surrounded by the top technology minds anywhere.
MIT Media Lab
75 Amherst Street
(Corner of Ames and Amherst)
Cambridge, MA 02139
Conference Location: Entire 6th floor of Building E14
Boston Marriott Cambridge
Discounted Conference Rate:
$309/night plus tax
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Explore historic Cambridge from the modern comfort and convenience of the Boston Marriott Cambridge. Located steps away from the popular Kendall Square, our hotel is situated next to the city's top shopping, dining, and entertainment venues, and offers superb access to world-class institutions like Harvard University and MIT. Upon arrival, guests will be checked-in to their spacious guest rooms and suites, all of which feature thoughtful details like plush bedding, high-speed Internet access, and 32-inch LCD TVs. Take time to visit our on-site fitness center and indoor pool facility before heading to our lobby Starbucks® for a morning coffee, or dine with us at Champions, our signature American restaurant.
You may also reserve your stay by phone at: 1-800-228-9290 or 617-494-6600. Be sure to mention the EmTech Next room block.
The group rate expires on May 11, 2018.
MIT is located on the north shore of the Charles River Basin in Cambridge, MA, USA. The campus is within three miles of two major interstate highways and less than six miles from a major international airport; it is accessible via public transportation. MIT is a 15-30 minute walk from downtown Boston (depending on the weather). MIT is a 30-40 minute walk from Harvard University, which is located just up the river from MIT.
Via Public Transportation
MBTA ("The T") Subway — Take the Red Line subway to the Kendall/MIT Station.
The Media Lab is located on the Red Line at the "Kendall/MIT" stop of the subway. You can transfer to the Red Line without additional fees from any other subway line at the appropriate station. Please check the subway map at your boarding point for more detailed information.
At the Kendall/MIT stop, you will surface on Main Street in Kendall Square. Landmarks include the Marriott Hotel and the MIT Coop. Facing Main Street, with the Marriott Hotel and the MIT Coop to your back, proceed right (west) to the first traffic light. This is the intersection of Main Street and Ames Street, with Legal Seafoods on the corner. Turn left onto Ames Street. The Media Lab is about halfway down the block, the second building on the left at 20 Ames Street. It is a large, contemporary, whitetiled building. Adjacent and connected to E15 is the new Media Lab expansion building (E14); its address is 75 Amherst Street. For information on Boston's public transportation system, including maps and schedules for bus, subway, and commuter rail service, please consult the MBTA.
From Logan Airport
By Taxi — Taxi fare from the airport is about $20$25. During nonrush hour, the taxi ride will take about 15 minutes. During rush hour, the ride could take 30 minutes.
By Subway — From any terminal at Logan Airport, take the Silver Line bus to South Station. At South Station, change to the Red Line subway to Kendall/MIT (inbound toward Alewife). Under normal conditions the ride will take about 30 minutes; the fare is $2.00.
By Car — Leaving the airport, follow the signs to the Sumner Tunnel. Enter the tunnel and stay in the right lane. At the end of the tunnel, continue to stay in the right lane, start down an incline and bear to the right immediately at the sign for Storrow Drive. Take Exit 26 for Cambridge/Somerville. Follow the signs for Back Bay/Cambridge (do not take the exit for Cambridge/Somerville). Stay in the right lane and follow the signs for Storrow Drive Westbound. After you pass under the pedestrian walkbridges, change to the left lane and take the exit for 2A North. Turn right and cross the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue).
From the Massachusetts Turnpike — Exit at "Brighton/Cambridge." Follow signs to Cambridge. The Doubletree Hotel will be on your right. Go straight over the bridge into Cambridge (on River Street) and take your first right onto Memorial Drive. The Charles River will be on your right. Go straight on Memorial Drive, staying to the left and going over the overpass at the Boston University (B.U.) Bridge (past MicroCenter). Staying in the left lane, pass under the next bridge, which is the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue). The first street after that bridge, to the left, is Ames Street—but it is one way in the wrong direction. You will have to take the second left (sign says Kendall Square) onto Wadsworth Street. Take the first left onto Amherst Street. The Media Lab is at 75 Amherst Street (E14) and 20 Ames Street (E15), at the corner where Amherst Street ends at Ames Street.
From Logan Airport — Leaving the airport, take the Sumner Tunnel to 93 North. Exit right off of 93 at the Cambridge/Storrow Drive exit. When the ramp splits, bear right following signs to Storrow Drive. Exit left at the Kendall Square exit. At the traffic light, go right onto the Longfellow Bridge. Follow Main Street (Main flows into Broadway) and take a left at the second set of lights (Ames Street). The Media Lab will be on your left about a block and a half down Ames Street. Logan International Airport's Web site provides uptotheminute information on weather, construction, and traffic.
To Logan Airport — Drive away from the river on Ames Street, and make the first right onto Main Street. Follow Main Street to the Longfellow Bridge; proceed over the Longfellow Bridge. At the end of the bridge, there will be signage directing you to Route 93 South. Follow Route 93 South to the Airport exit. From Route I93: From I93, take exit 26, and follow the signs to Back Bay along Storrow Drive West, approximately 1.5 miles, to the exit for Route 2A. The exit will be on the left, just before the Harvard Bridge (Massachusetts Avenue). The Charles River will be on your right. As you cross the bridge, you will be looking at MIT. At the end of the bridge, turn right on to Memorial Drive. The first street after that bridge, to the left, is Ames Street—but it is one way in the wrong direction. You will have to take the second left (sign says Kendall Square) onto Wadsworth Street. Take the first left onto Amherst Street. The Media Lab is at 75 Amherst Street (E14) and 20 Ames Street (E15), at the corner where Amherst Street ends at Ames Street.
Ambassador Brattle: 617.492.1100
Checker Cab Co.: 617.497.9000
Yellow Cab: 617.547.3000
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