1st | 2nd

Prof. Paul Krause

University of Surrey, United Kingdom

Information Networks and Ecological Networks

The Internet of Things, Edge and Cloud computing all have important contributions to make to a wide range of application areas. We are seeing much talk about their application to Smart Cities, healthcare and Industry IV, for example. However, there is one area where they have potential to help catalyse a significant, and much needed transformation. That is agriculture. We are, of course, seeing projects on precision agriculture with useful reductions in seed, fertiliser, pesticide and herbicide wastage. But we can do better than that; much, much better. A body of theoretical and empirical studies around the world is now showing that if agricultural practitioners work with natural processes to build both above and below ground biodiversity, then this can enhance the provision of ecosystem services that help to capture soil organic carbon, recycle trace elements and the core NPK needs, encourage predators of weed seeds, and more. The term ecological engineering is now becoming current to encapsulate a methodology by which agriculture could be transformed away from a net contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, groundwater pollution and disruption of social cohesion in rural communities. Instead, it could become a major vehicle for carbon capture and storage, and provision of clean and safe drinking water, whilst maintaining yields, enhancing the quality of food and increasing employment opportunities in rural areas. Facilitating this will need important contributions from the AINA community. This talk will provide an overview of what can be done now, and what is still needed in order to provide real time monitoring of agroecosystems to support the transition of global agriculture into a scientifically managed and sustainable system.

Biography of Paul Krause

Paul Krause is Professor in Complex Systems at the University of Surrey. He has over forty years' research experience in the study of complex systems in a wide variety of domains, in both industrial and academic research laboratories. Currently his research work focuses on distributed systems for the Digital Ecosystem and Future Internet domains. He has over 120 publications and is author of a textbook on reasoning under uncertainty. He is leader of the recently founded Digital Ecosystems research group at Surrey which, although based in the Department of Computer Science, collaborates strongly with other disciplines throughout the University and around the world. He has been working in and leading strong interdisciplinary teams since 2006 in a wide range of EU and UK research council funded projects. He also has forty years’ experience as a volunteer in practical nature conservation projects, and has travelled widely studying natural ecosystems, especially in the Mediterranean and Himalayan regions. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications, and a Chartered Mathematician.


Prof. Letizia Tanca

Polytechnic of Milan

Ethics and Data Quality: An Imperative Marriage

Data quality is a typical ethical requirement: we could never trust a piece of information if it did not have the typical data quality properties. Yet, we can also assert the opposite: that data should conform to a high ethical standard, for it to be considered of good quality. Hence, the satisfaction of the ethical requirements is actually necessary to assert the quality of a dataset, and this talk proposes to introduce explicitly the most common ethical requirements as dimensions of quality, grouped within an Ethics Cluster. We discuss the dimensions of ethics in connection with the various phases of what we call the information extraction process: (i) identifying the data sources containing the information of interest, (ii) collecting the corresponding data and integrating them in order to produce a unique dataset, and (iii) applying the appropriate information extraction methods (from the application of a simple query up to a complex statistical, machine learning or data mining analysis).

Biography of Letizia Tanca

Letizia Tanca is Full Professor at Politecnico di Milano, Dept. of Electronics, Information and Bioengineering (DEIB). She teaches Databases and Technologies for Information Systems and is the author of about 200 publications on databases, context-aware data management especially for mobile data, semantic information management and Big Data analysis. She has long been an editor for the best international journals and conferences and was associate editor of PVLDB 2014. Currently, she seats in the Committee for I4.0 of DEIB and is Vice President of the National group GII ( of the Italian professors of Computer Engineering. Previously, she has served as: Chair of the Board of Studies in Computer Engineering (Milan); Director of the Computer Science Area of DEIB; Representative for POLIMI at the Informatics Europe Society, EU. She is the author of an invited post in the ACM SIGMOD BLOG called “Wisdom: a double –V for Big Data", advocating the thesis that today the database community is called give a highly valuable contribution to put analytics into direct use.