Conferences and Workshops Visited

Mirai Solutions has been actively participating in various conferences and workshops this autumn. Here are the highlights.

EARL, London

At EARL, keynote lectures from R Studio and the R Consortium highlighted the latest technological developments, and speakers presented the positive role R is playing in their organisations. Recurring themes included R interoperability with Apache Spark, enhanced interactive reporting with R Markdown, and the strong commercial support available for R, driven by many organisations including Microsoft, and indeed, Mirai Solutions. Slides are available for EARL at https://earlconf.com/london/speakers/

SDS, Winterthur

The SDS conference in Winterthur brought together many Swiss-based data science professionals, offering state-of-art summaries and research presentations on topics as diverse as blockchain, train safety and sentiment analysis. Sven F. Crone gave an interesting talk on the gap between technology hype and established data science methods in practice. With a strong focus on Deep Learning, the conference finished with an inspiring address on artificial intelligence by grandee of neural network research, Prof. Jürgen Schmidhuber. The SDS 2016 conference webpage is at: https://www.zhaw.ch/en/research/inter-school-cooperation/datalab-the-zhaw-data-science-laboratory/sds2016/. Prof. Jürgen Schmidhuber has many interesting talks available online: http://people.idsia.ch/~juergen/videos.html

Understanding the Risks of Extreme Events, Zurich

On Friday, 2 September, Pauli attended the Workshop on “Understanding the Risks of Extreme Events: Challenges in Risk Management of Natural Disasters” organized by the ETH Risk Center in Zurich. The workshop needed to be moved to a larger lecture hall because of the large number of attendees. This was no wonder considering the excellent agenda and the list of speakers. As workshop highligths Pauli mentions the talk by Prof. Domenico Giardini who gave a current view on Earthquake risk management and used the latest Amatrice earthquake as an example in his talk “Managing Earthquake Emergencies: the Role and Experience of the Italian High Risk Commission”. The workshop gave a comprehensive overview of NatCat modeling both for novices and experts in the field. In particular, the talk by Andreas Schraft, “Natural Catastrophe Models Today and Tomorrow”, gave a statistical overview of the current developments in the field. All the conference talks can be accessed through: http://www.riskcenter.ethz.ch/events/workshops/workshops.html

ETH Risk Day 2016, Zurich

On 16 September Francesca and Guido attended the ETH risk day 2016, a mini-conference on Risk management in Finance and Insurance. Of the many interesting talks, one in particular gave start to stimulating discussion after: “Defining Principles of a Robust Insurance Solvency Regime” by Dr. René Schnieper, former Head of the Insurance Division and Member of Executive Board at Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority. In his talk Dr. Schnieper suggests that Risk Modelling should take advantage of suitable scenarios. The slides of the talks can be found online at https://www.math.ethz.ch/imsf/events/events/presentations-risk-day-2016.html. We are looking forward to the Risk Day event next year to get an understanding of the development of the field.