AI: a threat or a liberator? A Dentons horizon-scanning event.

Held on Thursday, February 07, 2019


  • Birgitte Andersen (Big Innovation Centre)

  • Rob McCargow (PwC)

  • Søren Mortensen (IBM)

  • Emanuela Vartolomei (All Street)

  • Aric Whitewood (WilmotML)



This breakfast briefing on artificial intelligence is part of the ‘Digital Threat’ series that the CSFI has been running with the law firm, Dentons. As ever, some will see the rapid development of technology that can match the human brain as a threat; others will welcome it. Neither camp really knows to what extent, or when, breakthroughs in machine learning will become firmly embedded in the financial services industry.

The fundamental question is: will these programs complement what we do, or replace us? To break down the debate into less existential terms, this “Horizon Brief’ event will tackle the following questions:

  • How different is AI from automation?

  • How will the additional capabilities unfold?

  • What will be the impact on financial services’ innovation and competition? and

  • What might all this mean for jobs in, and the profitability of, the sector?

We are delighted to welcome five experts to lead the discussion:

  • Birgitte Andersen, CEO and Co-Creator of the Big Innovation Center, a London-based investment hub. A Professor at Birkbeck College, she is an expert in business innovation, productivity and intellectual property, including policy proposals to enhance economic growth.

  • Rob McCargow, Director of Artificial Intelligence at PwC UK, covering the impact of automation on the workforce and society. He is an advisory board member of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on AI and an adviser to the IEEE Global Initiative on the Ethics of Autonomous and Intelligent Systems.

  • Søren Mortensen, Director of Business Transformation at IBM. His responsibilities include innovation in financial markets, covering developments in cognitive and blockchain technology.

  • Emanuela Vartolomei, Founder and CEO of All Street, which is dedicated to democratising access to investment via crowdfunding and shared knowledge. An economist with an MBA from Oxford, her financial services experience spans corporate banking and asset management.

  • Aric Whitewood, Founding Partner and Head of Machine Learning at WilmotML. He was previously Head of Data Science at Credit Suisse, running AI-focused projects internationally.

If you, or a colleague, would like to join us, please email or call the CSFI on 020 7621 1056. Breakfast will be provided from about 8am.

Sincerely yours,

Andrew Hilton