The Turing Podcast

24
Sep

How to communicate science to non-specialists

We chat about all things science communication with two Turing colleagues: Ethics Research Fellow Mhairi Aitken and Science Writer James Lloyd. They discuss why we need science communicators in the first place, what makes for good communication, and what specific challenges are associated with communicating data science and AI research to the general public.
6
Aug

Tackling the Infodemic

This week on the podcast, we bring you a conversation the hosts had last December with PhD candidate Elizabeth Seger. Elizabeth studies at The University of Cambridge and is a research assistant at the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence. Talking about her work with The Alan Turing Institute, she explains how informed decision making in democracies is being impacted by modern technology, and in particular how online misinformation has affected the pandemic response. Find out more about the research here: https://www.turing.ac.uk/blog/infodemics-and-crisis-response?_cldee=ZWNoYWxzdHJleUB0dXJpbmcuYWMudWs%3d&recipientid=contact-9b098e61071be911a974002248014773-9d06c72d733d47418edbfd23c7e38bcb&esid=2e510c56-7d14-eb11-a813-0022483ed0bb

23
Jul

How can AI help us understand breast cancer

In this episode hosts Jo Dungate and Rachel Winstanley speak to Andrew Holding, a Senior Research Associate at Cancer Research UK's (CRUK) Cambridge Institute and Turing Fellow. Andrew discusses how his research is using machine learning to understand the biology that underlies breast cancer to help improve treatments.
9
Jul

Palaeoanalytics: Using Data Science and Machine Learning to answer questions about Human Evolution

The hosts chat with to Professor Robert Foley, who works on Human Evolution at the University of Cambridge and is a Fellow of The Alan Turing Institute. The conversation takes a broad view of how our understanding of human evolution has changed in recent decades and focusses in on the Turing institute’s Palaeoanalytics project, which involves applying data science and machine learning methods to non-genomic data. Find out more about this project here: https://www.turing.ac.uk/research/research-projects/palaeoanalytics

2
Jul

How good is AI at detecting online hate?

AI is widely lauded as a way of reducing the burden on human online content moderators. However, to understand whether AI could, and should, replace human moderators, we need to understand its strengths and limitations. In this episode our hosts speak to the researchers Paul Röttger and Bertie Vidgen to discuss how they are attempting to tackle online hate speech, in particular through their work on HateCheck - a suite of tests for hate speech detection models.

25
May

Optimizing Policy for Sustainable Development

In an interview recorded last year, Jo & Ed are joined by Dr Omar A Guerrero, an Economist & Computational Social Scientist at The Alan Turing Institute & UCL Department of Economics, whose research focusses on economic behaviour and institutions from an interdisciplinary angle. The episode focusses on Policy Priority Inference (PPI); a technology developed in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme. PPI is intended to be used to optimise government policy to meet sustainable development goals and identify the policy priorities that governments need to set if they are to adopt a specific development strategy. Read more about the research discussed in this episode here: https://www.turing.ac.uk/research/research-projects/policy-priority-inference

28
Apr

Covid lockdowns: which policies worked best?

This week on the podcast, the hosts are joined by Sören Mindermann & Mrinank Sharma who are PhD students from Oxford University. Mrinank works as part of Oxford's Future of Humanity Institute, whilst Sören is a member of Oxford Applied and Theoretical Machine Learning Group and the episode focuses on the research they've recently had published on inferring the effectiveness of government interventions against Covid-19, during the first wave of the pandemic in 2020. You can find the research article for this work here: https://science.sciencemag.org/content/371/6531/eabd9338

8
Mar

In conversation with Sue Black

In this episode the hosts were joined by Professor Sue Black to discuss her inspirational life story and career, as well as the initiatives she has set up to encourage more women into the tech sector and her hopes for the future.

Sue Black is a Professor of Computer Science and Technology Evangelist at Durham University, has set up initiatives such BCS women and the social enterprise Tech mums, to encourage more women into computing and has received an OBE for ‘Service to technology’. She was also instrumental in the campaign to save Bletchley Park.

4
Mar

Mapping the UK’s Solar Power

This week the hosts chat with Dr Dan Stowell, senior researcher at Queen Mary University of London and fellow of The Alan Turing Institute, about his work on addressing climate change via creating high-coverage open dataset of solar photovoltaic installations in the UK.

It also happens to be research that podcast host Ed was involved in as you'll hear!

You can check out the paper on this topic, published in Nature Scientific Data here: https://www.nature.com/articles/s41597-020-00739-0

23
Feb

Robert Winston on science & the public in the Covid era

On this episode of the podcast, we are joined by Lord Robert Winston to talk about engaging with the public about the science of combatting Covid-19. Professor of Science and Society and Emeritus Professor of Fertility Studies at Imperial College London, Robert has also had an incredible career in television, presenting the BBC’s The Secret Life of Twins, Child of Our Time and the BAFTA award-winning The Human Body. 

Professor Winston runs a research programme at the Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology at Imperial College that aims to improve human transplantation. He has over 300 scientific publications about human reproduction and the early stages of pregnancy. He is also Chairman of the Genesis Research Trust – a charity which raised over £13 million to establish the Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology and which now funds high quality research into women’s health and babies.  

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