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AI: Cutting-Edge Overviews & Tutorials with Professor Alexandre Antonelli

Talk Title
Unleashing the Power of AI to Support Nature Conservation

Abstract
Never before has nature been at greater risk from human activities and climate change. There is therefore an urgent need to prioritise available resources in ways that provide maximum benefits to biodiversity, climate, and people. In this talk, Professor Alexandre Antonelli will outline key areas where artificial intelligence could play a substantial role in supporting on-the-ground conservation actions. He will present his efforts so far to use machine learning for identifying the most cost-efficient areas for protection and restoration, and for identifying the species most likely to be at risk of extinction so that suitable measures can be put in place in a timely way. Drawing on the vast amounts of data being currently unlocked from Kew’s unparalleled plant and fungal collections, their global partnerships, and the expertise and interests of the researchers at I-X, this talk is intended as a first dialogue on ways to foster institutional and personal collaborations that advance fundamental knowledge as well as help tackling global socio-environmental challenges.

Speaker Bio – Professor Alexandre Antonelli
Professor Alexandre Antonelli is the Director of Science at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. He is also Professor in Biodiversity and Systematics at the University of Gothenburg, a Visiting Professor at the Department of Biology at the University of Oxford and a Distinguished Scientist and Visiting Professor at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. He is a Trustee of WWF-Sweden, the President and Co-Founder of the Antonelli Foundation for Biodiversity Research and Conservation, and Principal Investigator of the Atlantic Forest Research and Conservation Alliance. He is an elected fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society of Arts and Sciences in Gothenburg, the Royal Geographical Society and the Royal Society of Biology. He was previously a Cisneros Visiting Scholar at Harvard University and Founder and first Director of the Gothenburg Global Biodiversity Centre, established during his time as Scientific Curator of the Gothenburg Botanical Garden.

Antonelli’s passion is nature, and his mission mirrors that of RBG Kew’s: to understand and protect biodiversity for the well-being of people and the future of all life on Earth. To this end, he studies the distribution, evolution, conservation, and sustainable uses of species and develops methods to speed up scientific discovery and innovation. His research focuses on the tropics, where most species occur and the threats are most acute. Most recently he has been particularly interested in the application of artificial intelligence techniques, remote sensing, and environmental genomics for biodiversity research, conservation, and restoration.

He has published over 230 peer-reviewed scientific articles and book chapters, and his work has been cited over 20,000 times. He was named on the Web of Science/Clarivate 2020, 2021, 2022 and 2023 ‘Highly Cited Researchers’ list, which identifies pioneering researchers in the top 1% of their field, and was the recipient of the prestigious 2022 Senckenberg Prize for Nature Research. In 2022, his first popular science book, The Hidden Universe – Adventures in Biodiversity, was published in several countries and languages.

Time: 14.00 – 15.00
Date: Thursday 6 June
Location: Hybrid Event | I-X Conference Room, Level 5
Translation and Innovation Hub (I-HUB)
Imperial White City Campus
84 Wood Lane
W12 0BZ

Link to join online via Teams.

Any questions, please contact Andreas Joergensen (a.joergensen@imperial.ac.uk).

Event registration link: Register Now