Dalkey Book Festival reveals a new series of Artificial Intelligence events 

International speakers added to line-up to explore ‘Tomorrow’s World: Living with AI’ 

by Gazette Reporter
0 comment

Dalkey Book Festival, Europe’s leading literary and ideas festival, has today revealed that a new series of events has been added to its June 2024 programme, focusing on how people will live with Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how it will shape the future. 

The dedicated series of five AI-focussed sessions will be hosted on 15th and 16th June, bringing the total number of events to 76 over the four day festival (13-16th June). Approximately 25,000 guests are expected to attend. 

Having recently announced its 2024 line-up, the festival is set to welcome writers, thinkers and journalists from over ten countries, including renowned journalist Christiane Amanpour and Booker Prize-winning Irish author Paul Lynch. Unveiling Dalkey’s new AI series, festival director Sian Smyth said the new events will see the festival attract “more big thinkers to debate some of the most pressing topics of our time.”

Dissecting the theme of how we will live with AI into the future, the event series includes: 

  1. AI and the Wealth of Nations 
  2. The Moral Maze: Can AI and God Live Together?
  3. RoboCop: Policing the Robots, Who Gets to Control AI?
  4. Deep Fakes, Democracy and Despotism: Politics and Media in a World of AI 
  5. Black Mirror: Literature, Creativity and Education in the Age of AI

Confirmed speakers added to the festival schedule to debate AI include David Brooks of The New York Times, probably the most influential commentator in America; Charles Sennott, the award-winning war correspondent and founder of The GroundTruth Project; novelist Donal Ryan (whose six novels have all been number one bestsellers); Robert Shrimsley, UK chief political commentator and executive editor of the Financial Times; Jeffrey Goldberg, editor in chief at The Atlantic; Alison Darcy, CEO of Woebot; David McCourt, global technology, media and telecom entrepreneur and Emmy-winning TV producer; leading neuroscientist, Kevin Mitchell; Colm O’Regan, Irish stand-up comedian, bestselling author and award-winning broadcaster; Roisin Kiberd, writer and columnist; Dolores Fernandez, president and CEO of South Florida PBS television; Jennifer O’Connell, opinion editor at the Irish Times; Andrea Catherwood, award-winning news broadcaster and journalist;  Kenneth Cukier, deputy executive editor of The Economist; Ian Robertson, neuroscientist and professor of psychology at TCD; NewsTalk technology correspondent, Jess Kelly; and Eli Noam, Director of the Columbia Institute for Tele-Information. 

Speaker David McCourt, a best-selling author, Emmy-award-winning TV producer, and entrepreneur, who is the founder and chairman of National Broadband Ireland, commented “With each day that passes, we’re learning more about how to harness the transformational benefits of Artificial Intelligence. Technology is a solution for cheaper and better education, cheaper healthcare, and a cleaner environment. That’s why it will shape tomorrow’s world and I’m excited to join an esteemed bench of speakers to explore the opportunities and threats of AI at this year’s Dalkey Book Festival.  

“Ireland has a tremendous opportunity to be a global leader in AI, as it is soon set to become the most connected country in Europe through its National Broadband Plan. Without connectivity and access to technology, the gap between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have-nots’ will only get wider and thankfully, Ireland has been quick to act. It has become a country’s responsibility to ensure all citizens have access not just to connectivity but also to the health and wealth that AI can bring to its people, whilst also installing the appropriate guardrails and protections.”

Festival director and economist, David McWilliams, added, “Like all transformative technologies AI has the potential to improve the human condition but also to disrupt millions of people’s lives and livelihoods and there are rightly safety and transparency concerns. Dalkey has never shied away from debating these big issues, and we’re excited to bring some of the world’s leading experts together who combine intellectual prowess with real-world experience to bring festival guests unique insight.”

Tickets go on sale from 10 am this Wednesday 15 May 2024. For more information on event topics, speakers and tickets, please visitwww.dalkeybookfestival.org

Related Articles