Harnessing Artificial Intelligence for Biodiversity Conservation


Thursday 26 September, 2013

12:30 – 1:30pm Please arrive for a 12:30pm start.

The new Global Change Institute headquarters
Level 2, Room 275
Building 20 (adjacent to the Steele Building)
University of Queensland MAP

Registration is complimentary but places are limited.

At the forefront of linking conservation science with quantitative tools from the field of artificial intelligence (AI), Dr Iadine Chadès will introduce the process of making smart conservation decisions under imperfect knowledge and resource constraints. During her PhD, Dr Chadès developed new methods to tackle complex optimisation problems for mobile robots using Markov decision processes (MDP). She discovered that these models can also be used to improve decision-making in modern conservation science – teaching a robot to navigate utilizes the same mathematics as choosing the best conservation actions to save threatened species under uncertainty. Eager to contribute to conservation science, she changed career and turned towards decisions in ecology. Combining expertise in AI with ecological and economic models, this seminar will look at complex applied conservation problems and the solutions that can be applied to efficiently eradicate invasive weeds, control mosquito-borne diseases and protect threatened species from extinction.

About the Speaker

Dr Iadine Chadès' work provides guidance to managers on how to make decisions under uncertainty in the most cost efficient way. Originally trained in Artificial Intelligence, Iadine turned towards ecology in 2006, successfully developing new optimisation methods to manage and survey disease, invasive and endangered species across time and space. In particular, Dr Chadès has pioneered the use of Partially Observable Markov Decision Processes (POMDP) to solve optimal management problems in ecology and artificial intelligence (AAAI Best paper award and PNAS papers). Dr Chadès is the Team Leader of the CSIRO Conservation Decisions Lab (CES) and the recipient of a 2013 Julius Career Award.

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