The Ethics of AI

Date: Tuesday, October 23, 2018
Time: 6:00pm-8:30pm
Location: Santa Clara University
De Saisset Museum
500 El Camino Real
Santa Clara, CA 95050



In the early years Big Data was a topic of interest only for large social media companies like Google, Yahoo and Facebook. Today, however, technologies like smart phones, intelligent sensors, driver-assisted cars and machine learning have made big data an integral part of everyday life. It has changed business processes (work), enabled personal flexibility (live) and enhanced entertainment (play) that have forever changed our lives.

Please join ACG Silicon Valley’s expert Keynote panel and learn what the future has in store for society with Big Data involving medicine, industry, transportation, business and your own personal lives.


Our Distinguished Panel


Shannon Vallor

Regis and Dianne McKenna
Professor, Dept of Philosophy
Santa Clara University

Shannon is the Regis and Dianne McKenna Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Santa Clara University in Silicon Valley, a consulting AI Ethicist supporting Google Cloud AI and a member of the Board of Directors of the Foundation for Responsible Robotics.

Shannon’s research explores the philosophy and ethics of emerging science and technologies. Her work investigates how human character is being transformed by rapid advances in artificial intelligence, robotics, new social media, surveillance, and biomedical technologies, and appears in journals such as Ethics and Information Technology, Philosophy & Technology, and Techne, as well as a 2016 book from Oxford University Press: Technology and the Virtues: A Philosophical Guide to a Future Worth Wanting. Shannon is the editor of the forthcoming Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Technology and is currently working on a new book on the subject of artificial intelligence and ethics: The AI Mirror: Rebuilding Humanity in an Age of Machine Thinking. Recent professional honors include the 2015 World Technology Award in Ethics.


John Markoff

Fellow, Center for Advanced Study Behavioral Sciences, Inc.
Former Sr. Writer
New York Times

John Markoff, a Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist, wrote for The New York Times’ science and technology beat for 28 years, where he was widely regarded as the paper’s star technology reporter. He is currently a journalist in residence at the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing at the University of California at Berkeley. In 2013, Markoff was part of a Pulitzer Prize-winning team for Explanatory Reporting “for its penetrating look into business practices by Apple and other technology companies that illustrates the darker side of a changing global economy for workers and consumers.”

John’s books include: The High Cost of High Tech (with Lennie Siegel); Cyberpunk: Outlaws and Hackers on the Computer Frontier (with Katie Hafner); Takedown: The Pursuit and Capture of America’s Most Wanted Computer Outlaw (with Tsutomu Shimomura); What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry; and Machines of Loving Grace: The Quest for Common Ground Between Humans and Robots. John is currently working on a biography of Stewart Brand.


Amit Pradhan

President, Silicon Valley Blockchain Society
Executive Chairman, Zero Labs

Amit is a creator, investor & speaker, who spends his time creating, evangelizing & investing in the future of responsible AI & Decentralization with a focus on technology, startups and systems that have a positive impact on the humans they serve.

Amit travels around the world speaking at events, to evangelize the need and the path to a future society that is driven by responsible AI, around Privacy, decentralization of power/control, recognition of bias and the economic agency in a world that is losing jobs to automation at a rate and scale that is faster than ever before.

He is the President of Silicon Valley Blockchain Society, a network of some of the largest Investors, Thinkers, Practitioners and Creators – with a core mission to ‘Fund the Revolution’ and bring with it a thoughtful and responsible approach to the impact, value and culture in the Decentralized Ecosystem.

As the Executive Chairman at Zero Labs, he and his team are creating a full private ‘brain’ that lives on user devices to listen, learn, reason, adapt and do tasks for its users without sending private data to the cloud and to give users control and economic agency over this rich data.

As a GP at JetVentures, Amit invests in startups that use the power of exponential technology, to become a positive part of the daily life of humans around the world.

Tom Gruber

Researcher, Designer and Entrepreneur

As head of technology and design for Siri, Tom Gruber helped usher in the era of intelligent assistants driven by Artificial Intelligence.

Tom Gruber is a product designer and entrepreneur who uses AI technology to augment human intelligence. He was cofounder, CTO, and head of design for the team that created Siri, the intelligent personal assistant that helps you get things done just by asking. When Siri was released by Apple in 2011, it was a watershed moment in the history of Artificial Intelligence, bringing AI to the mainstream user experience. Now an integral part of Apple’s products, Siri is used more than 2 billion times a week in over 30 countries around the world. At Apple for over 8 years, Tom led the Advanced Development Group that designed and prototyped new capabilities for Siri and related products that bring intelligence to the interface. He was instrumental in bringing Apple as a founding member to the Partnership on AI to Benefit People and Society and served on the board of directors. At Apple Tom promoted the philosophy of Humanistic AI, which he presented in a popular TED talk.


Our Distinguished Moderator


Brian Green

Director, Technology Ethics
Markkula Center for Applied Ethics
Santa Clara University

Brian is the director of technology ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. His responsibilities include representing the Center at the Partnership on Artificial Intelligence to Benefit People and Society, speaking and publishing on AI ethics as well as various other topics in ethics and technology, and coordinating the Center’s partnership with The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose. Green reviews and evaluates applications to the Center’s Hackworth grant program which awards funding to SCU faculty, staff, and students for work in applied ethics. He also coordinates the Technology and Ethics Faculty Group, helps coach and coordinate the University’s Ethics Bowl team, works with the Center’s Environmental Ethics Fellows, and several other initiatives. In addition, Green teaches engineering ethics in the Graduate School of Engineering.

Brian’s background includes doctoral and master’s degrees in ethics and social theory from the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley. His undergraduate degree is in genetics from the University of California, Davis, and he has conducted molecular biology research in both academic and industrial settings.