TU Wien Informatics

20 Years

Vienna Gödel Lecture 2022: Toby Walsh

  • 2022-06-09
  • Digital Humanism
  • Public Lecture
  • Event

Toby Walsh, AI expert and “rock star” of Australia’s digital revolution talks about machines behaving badly.

Toby Walsh, one of the world’s leading researchers in Artificial Intelligence and "rock star" of Australia's digital revolution.
Toby Walsh, one of the world’s leading researchers in Artificial Intelligence and "rock star" of Australia's digital revolution.


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TU Wien Informatics will be welcoming Toby Walsh, AI expert and “rock star” of Australia’s digital revolution, for the Gödel Lecture 2022. He will delve into the ethical challenges of AI.

Opening and Moderation

Welcome Address

  • Sabine Seidler, Rector of TU Wien
  • Gerti Kappel, Dean of TU Wien Informatics

Vienna Gödel Lecture: “Machines Behaving Badly”

  • Toby Walsh, Professor of Artificial Intelligence at UNSW Sydney and Head of the Algorithmic Decision Theory Group at CSIRO Data61


Join us for drinks and refreshments after the lecture at the AudiMax Foyer.


Machines Behaving Badly

Artificial intelligence is an essential part of our lives – for better or worse. It can be used to influence what we buy, who gets shortlisted for a job, and even how we vote. Without AI, medical technology wouldn’t have come so far, we’d still be getting lost on backroads in our GPS-free cars, and smartphones wouldn’t be so, well, smart. But as we continue to build more intelligent and autonomous machines, what impact will this have on humanity and the planet?

There’s a lot of discussion in many different fora about the ethical challenges of digital technologies like AI. But much of this is unnecessary. AI isn’t the first technology to touch our lives, and many of the issues it raises are not new. In this talk, Toby Walsh will identify what new issues AI brings to the table, as well as where AI requires us to address otherwise old issues. He will cover topics such as how we program computers to be fair, whether we should ban facial recognition software and why transparency in AI systems is greatly over-rated.

About Toby Walsh

Toby Walsh is one of the world’s leading researchers in Artificial Intelligence. He is a Laureate Fellow and Scientia Professor of Artificial Intelligence in the School of Computer Science and Engineering at UNSW Sydney. He leads the Algorithmic Decision Theory Group at CSIRO Data61, Australia’s Centre of Excellence for ICT Research.

Newspapers refer to him as the “rock star” of Australia’s digital revolution. Walsh’s regular appearances in the media testify not only to his popularity as a scientist and educator but to his longstanding efforts in calling AI and its impacts to the attention of a broader public. He is passionate about AI regulations to ensure the public good, playing a leading role in the campaign to ban lethal autonomous weapons and advising the United Nations, the European Parliament, and federal governments.

Toby Walsh is an advocate for science education. His outreach activities include various popular science books, among them “2062: The World that AI Made” (2018), “Machines That Think: The Future of Artificial Intelligence” (2019), and his latest publication “Machines Behaving Badly: The Morality of AI” (2022).

Toby Walsh is a Humboldt Prize Awardee and has won the NSW Premier’s Prize for Excellence in Engineering and ICT and the ACP Research Excellence Award. He has been elected to the Australian Academy of Science, he is an ACM fellow, as well as a fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) and of the European Association for Artificial Intelligence. Throughout his international research career, he has held positions in England, Scotland, France, Germany, Italy, Ireland, and Sweden.

About Vienna Gödel Lectures

Named after the famous Austrian-American logician, mathematician, and philosopher Kurt Gödel (1906-1978) and introduced in 2013, the annual Vienna Gödel Lectures bring world-class scientists to Vienna. The lecture series illustrates computer science’s fundamental and disruptive contribution to our information society, and it investigates how our discipline explains and shapes the world we live in—and thereby, our lives as such.

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