On September 16th, 2019, ORBIT was proud to bring together some of the most eminent women working in AI ethics. Coming from all over the world, these women are working to ensure that tech works for the benefit of everyone in society. They represent some of the most insightful and brilliant minds leading the way in this difficult area, from fields including industry, professional services, academia, policy and civil society.

We sought to create an exciting and collaborative event that looks to the future of artificial intelligence working in an ethical way with and for society. The aim of bringing this group of people together was to enable new connections, new insights and new opportunities. We hope that the multi- disciplinary nature of the conference will have sparked new connections and collaborations between the people doing such vital work in this space.

Conference outputs

Our conference wanted to hear from as many different voices as possible – we wished to create many opportunities for people to have fruitful discussions and find areas for collaboration and mutual benefit, as well as to produce concrete outcomes from the day.

With this end in mind we gave almost half the day over to our four workshop tracks. These each focused on a particular area: algorithms and society; the world of work; decision-making and data; AI and global governance. Every attendee signed up for one of the workshops. In the first session participants discussed some of the challenges and problems in the area; in the second session they focused on solutions or ways to break roadblocks. The workshop chairs then presented the work of their group to a plenary session of conference later in the afternoon. They were supported by the ORBIT team and by a scribe in each session.

You can also watch a short video of the conference highlights here: 

The conference outputs were used as the basis of a Special Issue of the Journal of Responsible Technology.


8:45am - 9:15am

REGISTRATION: coffee and pastries

9:25am - 10:05am

KEYNOTE: Jacquelyn Krones, Microsoft
"The Richness of Uncertainty"

10:05am - 11:05am

WORKSHOPS: session 1

Algorithms & society
CHAIR: Safiya Noble

The world of work
CHAIR: Gina Neff

Data & decision-making
CHAIR: Lilian Edwards

AI & global governance
CHAIR: Bulbul Gupta

11:05am - 11:20am


11:20am - 12:00pm

KEYNOTE: Dame Wendy Hall, University of Southampton
“Socially Responsible AI”

12:00pm - 12:30pm

SCHOOLS' EVENT: winners' prizegiving and presentations

12:30pm - 1:15pm

LUNCH: Monson Room

1:15pm - 1:55pm

KEYNOTE: Beena Ammanath, Deloitte Consulting
"Diversity - The AI Success Imperative"

1.55pm - 2.55pm

WORKSHOPS: session 2

Algorithms & society
CHAIR: Safiya Noble

The world of work
CHAIR: Gina Neff

Data & decision-making
CHAIR: Lilian Edwards

AI & global governance
CHAIR: Bulbul Gupta

2:55pm - 3:10pm


3.10pm - 3:50pm

HEAD-TO-HEAD: Baroness Beeban Kidron and Jeanette Winterson in conversation
From Oranges to Silicon Valley

Jeanette Winterson is an award winning novelist and bold commentator. A rare working-class voice in the higher echelons of literary fiction, she has been a leading talent since the publication of her first autobiographically inspired novel, Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, 30 years ago. Her Dimbleby lecture revealed an anxiety about the role of women in technological innovation and recent novel Frankissstien explores trans-humanism.

Beeban Kidron was a film director for more than 30 years. Among her credits are the much lauded film adaptation of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit; Bridget Jones: Edge of Reason; To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar; and InRealLife. She is now a Crossbench member of the House of Lords, where she introduced specific data protections for under 18’s, and is Chair of 5Rights Foundation, who campaign for systemic changes to digital norms to uphold children’s rights in the digital world.

Jeanette and Beeban will discuss their meeting, creative friendship and current focus on female identity and children’s rights in the digital world.

3:50pm - 4:50pm

WORKSHOPS: Post-track plenary: the chairs from the workshop sessions will each present to the full conference on the work done in their sessions.
CHAIR: Maria Axente, PwC

4:50pm - 5:05pm

"Where do we go from here?"
Mia Dand of Lighthouse3

5.05pm - 5.30pm

KEYNOTE: Baroness Beeban Kidron
"Overselling AI: The Problems of an Automated Childhood"


CONFERENCE CLOSE: Professor Marina Jirotka

6:30pm - 7:00pm

Drinks in the garden (or marquee if inclement)
WELCOME: Alan Rusbridger, Principal of LMH

7:00pm - 9:00pm

Dinner in Hall
“Genes, Memes, and Clever Machines…….Disability Rights Face New Lows, and New Heights”

Keynote Speakers

Dame Wendy Hall, DBE, FRS, FREng is Regius Professor of Computer Science, Pro Vice-Chancellor (International Engagement), and is an Executive Director of the Web Science Institute at the University of Southampton. One of the first computer scientists to undertake serious research in multimedia and hypermedia, she has been at its forefront ever since. The influence of her work has been significant in many areas including digital libraries, the development of the Semantic Web, and the emerging research discipline of Web Science. Her current research includes applications of the Semantic Web and exploring the interface between the life sciences and the physical sciences.

Jacquelyn Krones is Principal for Ethics in the AI Perceptions and Mixed Reality Group at Microsoft. She helps teams uncover, prioritize, and address ethical challenges to align solutions with Microsoft’s values. She works on uncovering deep insights into people’s needs, desires, and motivations to position technology most helpfully within social systems.

Baroness Beeban Kidron is a British film director, children’s rights campaigner and member of the House of Lords. She is founder and director of the 5Rights Foundation, a civil society initiative that aims to make the digital world a more transparent and empowering place for children and young people. She is leading the passage of the Age-Appropriate Design Code through the legislative process to try and ensure that the online world is a safe space for children.

Jeanette Winterson CBE is a British writer and speaker who has won the Whitbread Prize, a BAFTA and many other literary awards, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society for Literature. Her award-winning first book, Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit, was dramatised by Beeban Kidron in 1990. She is Professor of Creative Writing at the University of Manchester. Her Richard Dimbleby Lecture in 2018 discussed the disproportionate impact of AI on women’s lives, and her latest book, Frankissstein, also focusses on AI and its effects.

Beena Ammanath is a managing director with Deloitte Consulting LLP and is an award winning senior executive with extensive global experience in Artificial Intelligence and digital transformation. Her knowledge spans e-commerce, financial, marketing, telecom, retail, software products, services, and industrial domains with companies such as HPE, GE, Thomson Reuters, British Telecom, Bank of America, E*TRADE and a number of Silicon Valley startups. Beena is the Founder and CEO of Humans For AI Inc. She is co-author of “AI Transforming Business.

Angela McKane

Angela McKane is the Director, Technology Intelligence for Business Development at BP. She obtained her first degree from the University of Glasgow and her postgrad MSc from the University of Northumbria at Newcastle in 2006. She first considered a pathway to academia and worked in the University of Glasgow, however was tempted away by the offer of a Data Privacy role with Transport for London. In 2008 she joined BP and in 2012 she was promoted and joined their Group Technology Function. From 2013 she led her team to digitalise and automate BP internal Business Intelligence and in 2018 she launched BP’s Technology Intelligence Service, which comprises a group of 10 analysts reporting to Angela who are based in the UK, US and China.


Not everyone will be able to attend, so we are publishing a website after the event containing bios for all the original 100 Women as well as their particular areas of interest – the aim is to create a reference source that could be used as a basis for further collaborations and projects.

All attendees will be able to submit papers for the ORBIT Journal (a gold-standard journal on the Directory of Open Access Journals). We plan to publish the outputs from the conference where appropriate, depending on the type of output.

We also plan to record the keynote talks as well as some other sessions – there will be a video available after the event with highlights.

Conference Sponsors

We are enormously grateful to our sponsors for this event, who have enabled us to reach a wider audience than would otherwise have been possible.

Venue & Directions

The Venue

The one-day event will take place at Lady Margaret Hall College in Oxford. Lady Margaret Hall was the first women's college at Oxford, and is alma mater to some of the UK's greatest women scientists.It retains its progressive approach, appointing the former editor of the Guardian, Alan Rusbridger, as its Principal in 2015. In 2016 it instituted a Foundation Year for under-represented students.


By Train

Oxford is easily accessible by train from most directions. The station is on the western edge of the city and from there you can take a taxi to the College (taxis are located outside the station at the front entrance). There is also a bus service, the 500 Park & Ride bus, that runs from the station up the Banbury Road every 15 minutes all day. You will need to alight at the Norham Gardens stop, just after the Engineering Department, and walk down Norham Gardens to the end.

By bus

There are two services that run directly to the centre of Oxford from both Heathrow and Gatwick airports. These leave from the airports' respective bus terminals and are the Oxford Tube and the X90. Both terminate in Oxford at the Gloucester Green bus station.


Our aim is to make the day as inclusive as possible for everyone who would like to attend, so please do let us know any requirements you have, including allergies, breastfeeding or accessibility.

Accommodation in the College

One en suite room adjusted for wheelchair users is available on the ground floor, and four further lift accessible, fully fitted en suite rooms are available in the Pipe Partridge building. There are five rooms with visual and vibrating fire alarms, and three fully fitted communal disabled toilets. The Simpkins Lee theatre, Talbot Hall and the Porters’ Lodge are fitted with induction loops. Disabled parking can also be booked.

Meeting rooms

Most of the buildings at LMH were built between the 19th century and the 1970s, and this means that there are some areas where disabled access is not currently available. All meeting rooms in the Pipe Partridge, Deneke and Eleanor Lodge buildings provide flat, ground floor access. The Simpkins Lee Theatre has level access to the top of the auditorium and spaces for wheelchairs at this level.

Food and dining

Please let us know any individual needs. The College can provide full allergen information for all their menus, and are happy to meet any specific requirements.

Associated Groups & Organisations

There are many organisations working on the inclusion of women and diverse minorities in STEM, and on issues of responsible tech. Some of them are listed here, with their permission. Please do visit their websites (linked from their logos), as there is great work going on! And if your group/company/institution addresses these issues but is not listed here, please do get in touch and we will add your logo and website.

The conference is now at capacity, but you are welcome to add your name to the waiting list in case a space becomes available. For further information, please email carolyn.ten.holter@cs.ox.ac.uk