UNESCO Inaugural conference: ‘AI & Data Science for Society’

In short


10 November 2022


13:00 - 18:00


Aula The Hague University of Applied Sciences

THUAS’s UNESCO Chair on AI & Data Science for Society - active since February 2022 - is a new Chair under the auspices of UNESCO and UNITWIN, that aims to generate insight and social impact through Artificial Intelligence and Data Science in Practice, specifically focusing on addressing the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Professor Lampros Stergioulas is honored and excited to present the vision for the UNESCO Chair: “AI and Data Science enable us to discover patterns in large amounts of data. We can use such technologies to contribute to solving societal issues, such as in health, well-being and sustainability. As Chair holder I look forward to explore and develop innovative and human-centric AI and Data technologies. Together with partners, colleagues and students, we’ll be working on impactful solutions for issues that are relevant to all of society”.


1 p.m. | Walk-in

1:30 p.m. | Opening by Jim Stolze, Tech Entrepreneur and tech-educator.

1:35 p.m. | Opening Statement by Dr. Elisabeth M. Minnemann, Chair of the Executive Board, The Hague University of Applied Sciences (THUAS): The role of THUAS in regional, national and international knowledge infrastructure, and its links with UNESCO

1:45 p.m. | Conference address by Dr. Tawfik Jelassi, Assistant Director-General for Communication and Information, UNESCO

1.50 p.m. | Opening Address by Drs. Kathleen Ferrier, Chair of the Dutch UNESCO Commission

2.00 p.m. | Inaugural Lecture by Prof. Lampros Stergioulas: Pursuing a common vision for harnessing AI and Data Science for Society

2:30 p.m. | Coffee break

2:55 p.m. | Introductory Address by Dr. Sanne de Vries, Director of Centre of Expertise Health Innovation THUAS: Health Innovation and the Role of Data Science

3:00 p.m. | PANEL: AI & Data Science in action - from Local to Global
Applied AI and Data Science are already transforming the way people live and work, and the application of such methods and tools can deliver great benefits to individuals, organizations and communities. In our time of fast-paced technology-driven transformation, there are a number of enabling factors that can help to accelerate the successful adoption of data technologies and also there are significant challenges along the way. What are the potential benefits from the application of AI and Data Science, and in what ways?


  • Prof. Tillal Eldabi, Professor of Business Analytics and Digital Innovation, University of Bradford UK
  • Dr. Alireza Ettefaghian, Head of Business Intelligence at Operose Health & AT Medics, UK
  • Dr. Davor Orlic, Chief Operating Officer at the International Research Center on Artificial Intelligence under the auspices of UNESCO.
  • Prof. Saad Ahmed Qazi, Dean, Director of Faculty of Electrical and Computer Engineering & National Centre of Artificial Intelligence, NED University of Engineering and Technology, Pakistan
  • Prof. Pedro P. Vergara, Delft University of Technology, the Netherlands
  • Prof. Saad Naeem Zafar, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Dean in Faculty of Computing, and Professor of Computing at Riphah International University, Pakistan
  • Prof. Sanne de Vries, Director of Centre of Expertise Health Innovation THUAS
  • Dr. Ester de Jonge, Senior Researcher, Data Science Research Group, THUAS (Rapporteur)
  • Dr. Koen E.A. van der Bogt MD PhD FEBVS, vascular surgeon / researcher, LUMC and HMC / Department of Surgery, Leiden University

3:40 p.m. | Signing UNESCO IRCAI collaboration agreement

3:45 p.m. | Coffee break

4:05 p.m. | Introductory Address by Dr. Bhanu Neupane, Programme Manager for ICT and Sciences and Open Access, UNESCO.

4:15 p.m.
| PANEL: The Global Challenges around AI and Data Science, and the role of UNESCO.
UNESCO in collaboration with IRCAI, IFAP, and UNESCO Chairs of AI and Data Sciences have developed a draft set of Guidelines for Open Solutions to apprise governments of the value of data and AI openness for monitoring and achieving progress on the Strategic Development Goals, as well as the Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence, the first global instrument on the subject, adopted by Member States at UNESCO’s General Conference , which aims protect and promote human rights and human dignity. What are the challenges that governments are facing in opening up Data and AI for the public good?


  • Prof. Oskar J. Gstrein, Data Research Centre, University of Groningen. The Netherlands.
  • Dr. Anna Mitriaieva, Program manager Research and Development, Data Services, Research and Innovation Directorate, CBS Statistics Netherlands.
  • Dr. Aisha Naseer, Director of Research, Huawei EMEA.
  • Dr. Bhanu Neupane, Programme Manager for ICT and Sciences and Open Access, UNESCO.
  • Prof. Majdi Owda, Dean, Faculty of Data Science, and UNESCO Chair in Data Science for Sustainable Development, Arab American University, Palestine
  • Prof. Lampros Stergioulas , UNESCO Chair of AI and Data Science for Society, THUAS (Rapporteur)
5:00 p.m. | Conclusion by Jim Stolze

5:15 – 6 p.m. | Reception


We look forward to seeing you on November 10! Please confirm your presence by registering here.