Symposium "Archives and AI" by FAN and the UK National Archives

Artificial intelligence (AI), resurgent in an era of Alexa and Siri, is transforming whole industries. Increasingly cheap and easy to use, AI seems to offer almost limitless potential to archivists. Machine learning technologies offer archives radical new capabilities and possibilities, while the challenges of appraisal, selection and sensitivity review of born-digital records might only be solvable through AI.

This free one-day symposium brings together experts from the field and archivists from around the world to discuss the possibilities that AI brings to the archive community, including data ethics, fact checking, handwritten text recognition and more.

The symposium will feature a number of talks, discussions, demonstrations, presentations and networking opportunities.

 

Speakers include:

  • John Sheridan, Digital Director, The National Archives
  • Olivier Thereaux, Head of Technology, Open Data Institute
  • Mevan Babakar, Head of Automated Fact Checking, Full Fact (the UK's independent fact-checking charity)
  • Dr Louise Seaward, Research Associate, The Bentham Project, University College London

Attendees (and non-attendees) can participate in the event on Twitter using #ArchivesAI

Please note that attendees should bring a laptop or mobile device.

Light refreshments will be provided throughout the event, while lunch can be obtained from our on-site catering facilities.

This event is supported by the Forum of National Archivists, a section of the International Council on Archives.

 

FULL PROGRAMME

09:00 Registration

09:30 Introduction and scene setting - John Sheridan, Digital Director, The National Archives UK

09:45 In practice: Fact checking using AI – Mevan Babakar, Head of Automated Fact Checking, Full Fact(the UK's independent fact-checking charity)

In practice: Using AI on PQs and other correspondence – Zachary Arundel, DfT Lab,Department for Transport

10:45 Break

11:00 In practice: Revolutionising access to archival material: Automated Text Recognition in Transkribus –
Dr Louise Seaward, Research Associate, The Bentham Project, University College London

In theory: AI, Data and Ethics – Olivier Thereaux, Head of Technology, Open Data Institute

Prospects: AI and adult literacy of the past (and future) – Colin Greenstreet, MarineLives

12:30 Lunch, networking opportunity

13:30 In practice: How (not) to build an archives bot – Jo Pugh, Digital Development Manager, The National Archives UK

In theory: Artificial Intelligence and Archives: considerations – Dr Anthea Seles, Secretary General, International Council on Archives

In theory: The role of open standards in relation to AI – Terence Eden, Head of Open Standards, Government Digital Service

15:00 Break

15:15 Prospects: The Artificially Intelligent Archivist: AI Research at The National Archives – Mark Bell, Big Data Researcher, The National Archives UK

15: 45 Prospects: AI at the BBC, Now and next – Peter Rippon, Executive Editor, BBC Archive

16:15 Panel discussion and Q&A

17:00 Wrap up

17:00 Close