Panel: Responsibility in Industry

Panel title: Responsibility in Industry

Panel: Marina Jirotka (chair), Alison Berthet (BSR), Jack Stilgoe (UCL), Maria Axente (PwC), Nelson Gonzalez (AWS)

Across the globe, businesses have come under increased pressure to consider the social and environmental impacts of their products and services. Concerns over the unintended consequences of technological innovation have sparked calls for greater “responsibility”. But what exactly does (or should) ‘responsibility’ mean in this context?  In this panel, industry leaders and academic experts in Responsible Research and Innovation (RRI), human rights and technological governance discuss this question and address key issues relating to responsibility in industry. Hosted by the Responsible Technology Institute's Student Network, the event takes place on 22 September and is open to any students with an interest in topics related to RRI.


Marina Jirotka is Professor of Human Centred Computing in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Oxford and Governing Body Fellow of St Cross College. Her expertise involves co-producing user and community requirements and human computer interaction, particularly for collaborative systems and she has been at the forefront of recent work in Responsible Innovation (RI) in the UK and the European Union. She leads an interdisciplinary research group investigating the responsible development of technologies that are more responsive to societal acceptability and desirability. She is an EPSRC Established Career Fellow -a five year investigation into Developing Responsible Robotics for the Digital Economy. She is Director of the newly established Responsible Technology Institute at Oxford and she is co-director of the Observatory for Responsible Research and Innovation in ICT(ORBIT) which provides RI services and training to ICT researchers and practitioners.

Panel members

Alison Berthet is a business and human rights consultant at BSR (Business for Social Responsibility). She specialises in advising companies on how to implement their responsibility to respect human rights in practice, managing risks and leveraging opportunities to enhance people’s rights. Until recently, she worked at BT, leading on its new strategy on responsible tech and human rights, deploying policy, governance and engagement mechanisms to embed respect for human rights across BT’s technology value chain. Alison regularly advises on the human rights risks and opportunities of new innovation activities, notably helping shape BT’s responsible approach to artificial intelligence. Prior to joining BT in 2019, Alison was a corporate lawyer specialising in international arbitration and business & human rights disputes. Her passion for human rights and the potential role of business as a driving force for positive change dates back to her years studying public international and human rights law at the London School of Economics and Political Science. And the strong human rights tradition she grew up with in France.

Dr Jack Stilgoe is associate professor of Science and Technology Studies at University College London, where he works on the governance of emerging technologies. He runs the Driverless Futures project, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council, and is a fellow of the Turing Institute. His latest book is Who’s driving Innovation? New technologies and the collaborative state(Palgrave).

Maria Axente is Responsible AI and AI for Good Lead at PwC. She leads the implementation of ethics in AI for the firm while partnering with industry, academia, governments, NGO and civil society, to harness the power of AI in an ethical and responsible manner, acknowledging the benefits and risks in many walks of life. She has played a crucial part in the development and set-up of PwC’s UK AI Center of Excellence, the firm’s AI strategy and most recently the development of PwC’s Responsible AI toolkit, firms methodology for embedding ethics in AI. Maria is a globally recognised AI ethics expert, an Advisory Board member of the UK All-Party Parliamentary Group on AI, member of BSI/ISO & IEEE AI standard groups, a Fellow of the RSA and an advocate for gender diversity, children and youth rights in the age of AI.

Nelson Gonzalez is the Head of Global Impact Computing at Amazon Web Services, a division of AWS that applies cloud-based High Performance Computing, Autonomous Systems, Quantum Computing, IoT, and AI/ML solutions to large scale social impact challenges globally.

If you would like to take part in this event, please sign up here:

Wednesday, 22 September, 2021 - 14:00 to 15:00