DataFest 2022 Fringe

DataFest 2022 Fringe

We’re delighted to announce the full lineup of 2022 Fringe events! There’s something for everyone – from practical advice from experts and incredible learning opportunities, to hip hop and AI art. 

Browse the events below and make sure to register early for any you wish to attend – most have very limited spaces, so don’t miss out!

We don’t say this lightly, but this year’s DataFest is shaping up to be our most exciting ever. We have astronomers, nanotechnologists, quantum computing experts, data leaders, entrepreneurs, and many, many more all joining us to discuss how data and artificial intelligence may be harnessed to make the world a better place. So wherever you are in the world, if this is the kind of company you’d like to keep we’d love to have you join us at Datafest22!

If you’re interested in partnership opportunities with DataFest we’d love to hear from you – please get in touch at To read more about our fascinating lineup click here.

Time: 1pm

What Works for Children’s Social Care (WWCSC) became the first charity in the UK to place non-governmental research data into the Office for National Statistics. This is a huge step forward to allow for ongoing research into the children’s social care sector which has never had such a facility in the past. This session provides not only the insights into this pioneering archive project but also provides key data protection information for being compliant within a research project where data sharing is key.

This is a masterclass in data sharing requirements for research purposes as well as bringing a spotlight on the need for improvements in compliant data sharing for child safeguarding. And, if there is data that can be harnessed to develop new knowledge and influence government policies to improve children’s lives then there may be something special on the horizon if WWCSC has its way. This is a must see session!

Click here to register.

Time: 16:00 – 17:00 BST

In today’s fast-paced, ever-changing digital world, there are few certainties. But one thing that you can guarantee is that as we digitize more of our lives, we will create more and more data.

Does that scare you? Excite you? Or a bit of both? As a business leader, an entrepreneur or simply a citizen of today’s data-driven world, understanding how data can add value to what you do can be a bit daunting. And taking those first steps can be a challenge. Fear not. We have the course you’ve been searching for! Join us in this short, interactive webinar to get acquainted with The Data Lab’s “Driving Value from Data” course, where you will meet the team behind the course, get an overview of what is covered and, most importantly, get to ask questions. We are not fans of boring, broadcast-only webinars where you just sit back and listen. We much prefer to have an interactive conversation.

We hope that sounds interesting and we will do our best to make this webinar informative and fun. See you there!

Click here to register.

Women and AI is coming to Scotland!

Come and join us celebrate the launch of Women in AI activity in Scotland!

Part of the Ada Scotland Festival and DataFest 2022 and supported by ComputershareThe Data Lab Innovation Centre and the Scottish AI Alliance, this is a networking event to celebrate the official launch of Women in AI activity in Scotland.

The focus for the Scotland region will be on inspiring and connecting women and people from under represented communities in Scotland on the potential for AI to positively benefit society and the economy and showcase the AI sector as a potential career path.

We want to emphasise that the term “Women in AI” does not just mean people who code but can include a whole range of roles in the sector that are not technical i.e. project and programme managers, product managers, policy specialists, marketers, business support, educators etc

We will do this through building a community of women and people from under represented communities who work in AI in Scotland to connect, support and collaborate with each other.

This community will then interact with the wider Women in AI UK community.

Click here to register.

Innovation in AI is breaking through into mainstream applications as never before. No longer limited to AI specialists, innovation can be found across a wide range of applications, including the medical, energy and manufacturing sectors, amongst many others. Such innovation requires insight, expertise and investment to produce but, once released, may be easy for competitors to copy. The intellectual property system, including patents and copyright, can be used to help retain control. This session covers how IP can be used to identify, protect and commercialise AI-related innovation out in the real world.

Click here to register.

Join Nesta, Changeworks and BE-ST for an interactive workshop to explore how data can be used to drive the decarbonisation of Scotland’s homes to reach Net Zero targets by 2045. You will hear presentations and provocations from those using data on the front-line and be posed problem-statements to choose from to explore how we can use data to address the Climate Emergency. You will be introduced to datasets that could be leveraged to make changes across Scotland and have a chance to discuss ideas with data scientists working on these issues to help us decarbonise our homes.

Click here to register.

In this event, participants will create their own customer feedback chatbots. Based on an inChat template for customer feedback, we will step through the implementation and deployment of a chatbot.

Participants are encouraged to adapt their own product or service during the workshop, in-order to realise the potential of AI and new approaches to customer research. We will make the most of conversational AI without the need for any technical know-how with the help of the inChat platform. The platform provides a no-code intervention for defining chatbot dialogue, managing deployments, and capturing responses.

This is a hands on workshop, so participants are expected to bring a laptop or tablet device to work with. We will deploy the chatbots during the event where your neighbours will play the role of your customers and provide an example response that we can then analyse together using the platform.

There is a maximum of 12 places. The workshop is open to all, but best suited to anyone involved in reaching audiences, customers, or conducting research.

The workshop will take place at 2.30PM at the Student Enterprise Hub, Appleton Tower, 11 Crichton St, Newington, Edinburgh EH8 9LE. (NB the entrance faces Chapel Street/Windmill Street).

Click here to register.

We will have 5 speakers from the School of Mathematics presenting their different research with an emphasis on the important role mathematics and statistics play in anything involving data. The speakers represent a range in different career stages. The whole event will last an hour.

Title: Missing Data

Speaker: Miguel de Carvalho

Abstract: Missing data are ubiquitous in practice.

They are so common that most data analysis packages have reserved a special symbol just to encode them: NA (which stands for ‘Not Available’). In this talk, I will offer a gentle introduction to the missing data problematic as well as to the statistical principles for handling it.

Title: Reducing Carbon Emissions at the Easter Bush Campus

Speaker: Albert Solà Vilalta

Abstract: The University of Edinburgh produces the heat and part of the electricity it consumes, mostly by burning gas. In the Easter Bush campus, the Estates Department of the university is considering a solar thermal plant with heat storage to (partially) satisfy the heat demand. The Estates Department has been responsible for operating the heat network for many years, and they have plenty of data of seasonal heat demand. We aim to use this data to inform decisions about the proposed solar thermal plant, both from a planning and an operational perspective. In this talk, I will give an overview of the project, which is currently running as a Mathematics Undergraduate Honours Project.

Title: The lead piping project

Speaker: Gail Robertson

Abstract: Lead exposure can have serious consequences for human health. The Drinking Water Quality Regulator (DWQR) and Scottish Water have reduced the number of lead pipes in the water distribution network, but a large number of houses in Scotland are thought to have internal lead piping which could contribute significantly to lead contamination in tap water. We built a statistical model to estimate the number of houses in Scotland with internal lead piping and identify postcodes with greater proportions of houses with lead piping. We used model predictions to develop a stratified sampling regime to validate our model. Further tap water samples showed that predictions provided a realistic estimate of number of houses with lead piping in some areas but were less accurate in other areas. Our study will allow the Scottish Government to estimate the scale of work involved with removing lead piping from residential properties.

Title: Artificial Intelligence: What Could Go Wrong?

Speaker: Desmond Higham

Abstract: Techniques from the world of Artificial Intelligence can achieve remarkable levels of performance, and they are now being deployed in many high-stakes applications. However, it is also the case that these techniques suffer from some quite shocking vulnerabilities. In image classification, a small, specially chosen change to an image, imperceptible to the human eye, may have a dramatic effect: a photograph of an aeroplane may be classified as a photograph of a toaster after it has been subjected to one of these devious “adversarial attacks.” Conflict escalation is currently taking place between researchers who use mathematical techniques to construct attack strategies, and those who devise corresponding defences. Other researchers are addressing the big picture question of whether it is inevitable that AI systems can be fooled in this way. I will give some illustrative examples and touch on some of the mathematical ideas behind them.

Title: How much data for meaningful life prognostics of Lithium-ion batteries? One cycle!

Speaker: Goncalo Dos Reis

Abstract: We discuss lithium-ion battery data, machine learning and provide a data-centric model accurately predicting a cell’s entire capacity degradation (loss of ability to store energy over time) from any single cycle of input data. Time allowing, we discuss more recent developments in battery prognostics, input data and model ensembling.

Click here to register.

Date: Friday 28 October 2022

Time:  11am – 3.00pm

Venue: Powis Community Centre, 11 Powis Circle, Aberdeen AB24 3YX

Target audience: Children of all ages & families

Look around you… technology and artificial intelligence plays a vital role in all of our lives. But where else can it be used and where do you want to see it?

During this free, drop-in event, children of all ages and families can try out hands-on activities which explores how artificial intelligence and technology is developed, and how it can be used in healthcare to improve our health and speed up the diagnosis of diseases. Can you win against a piece of paper in a game of noughts and crosses? Can you beat the Artificial Intelligence to find the fracture? Have you ever tried to build a robot? Families attending can take part in all of these activities and more. This event is supported by researchers from the iCAIRD project at the University of Aberdeen and TechFest as part of Explorathon 2022, Scotland’s celebration of research.

Want to get involved with developing the Scottish AI Playbook wiki while learning new skills in wiki editing? Then the Scottish AI Playbook Editathon is for you!

An editathon is an event where a group of people get together to contribute to a wiki around a particular theme. For the Scottish AI Playbook Editathon, we will be running twin tracks around Inclusivity Resources and Technical Resources.

So whether you have some information on Inclusivity and artificial intelligence that you think should be on the Scottish AI Playbook, you want to expand our Technical AI resources, or you want to learn how the wiki world works, then this editathon is where you want to be.

Held in conjunction with the DataFest Fringe and the Ada Scotland Festival, the Scottish AI Playbook Editathon will give you an introduction to our Playbook, a review of the resources we are looking for (plus a list of resources available if you just want to get creating!), as well as a demo and training session on how to create and edit pages on the Scottish AI Playbook.

There will be plenty of support, community and opportunities for collaboration available, whether you’re a seasoned wiki pro or a complete newbie.

Sign up at Ticket Tailor and you will receive an email with further joining instructions.

Want to get a better idea of what the Scottish AI Playbook is all about? Head over to and request an account so you can get to grips with the platform.

Join The New Real, a project out of the Edinburgh Future’s Institute, for a showcase of our work the weekend of October 28th – 30th with an opening event on the 28th. Experience our ground-breaking ideas around the arts and culture of tomorrow and how AI intersects with society to allow us to reflect back on ourself. Our Friday event has limited seating so please register early to ensure you have a spot. There will be a livestream of the event for those who cannot make it in person or for those joining from outside of Edinburgh.

Come collaborate with The New Real, as we look at how Artificial Intelligence interacts with people and the planet in fascinating and unanticipated ways, becoming a creative, playful and deep part of new artistic works and our everyday lives. Responding to EFI’s First Breath programme theme, discover how Art and Artificial Intelligence combine to fuel delightful new cultural experiences and help heal our planet in crisis.

Hear from leading international AI artists, designers and scientists how art and creativity can help to radically change how we think about AI design, to embrace human traits such as bias, disagreement, and uncertainty as a signal with creative potential rather than noise that needs to be removed. Gain insight into how our work is addressing the urgent need to tackle both energy intensive technologies and the disconnect between global climate information and people’s daily lives.

Following the Salon evening event, throughout the weekend an open Showcase exhibition explores the concept of ‘The New Real’, and the inflection that culture and society have gone through following the digital turn after Covid.

The New Real Salon Opening Free event

Audience: General public, cultural and science and technology sectors Format:

In person & Online Tickets: Ticketed event When: 28th October 2022 19.00 – 21.00 Doors Open At 18.30

Registration: click here

Part of EFI’s inaugural event season, The New Real Salon Opening event will present international projects and practitioners, alongside highlights of our most recent research partnerships with artists and festivals. Leading contemporary AI artists, designers and scientists will explore the most transformative technologies out there and announce a major new programme on Next Generation Intelligent Experiences.

The New Real programme is a unique hub for AI, creativity and futures research. We believe the arts can be at the forefront of new sustainable industries and economies, and devise imaginative ways to experiment with new experiences, practices, infrastructures and business models, and to empower people to be agents of positive change. Please note that this event will be recorded and the data used for research and promotional purposes. We will ask you to confirm your consent on arrival at the event.

The New Real Salon Showcase Free event

Audience: General public, cultural and science and technology sectors

Format: In person

Tickets: No Ticket required

When: Open Daily 29th October 2022 11.00 – 16.00 30th October 2022 11.00 – 16.00

Join The New Real, a project out of the Edinburgh Future’s Institute, for a showcase of our work the weekend of October 28th – 30th. Experience our ground-breaking ideas around the arts and culture of tomorrow and how AI intersects with society to allow us to reflect back on ourself. The weekend showcase is an opportunity for participants to continue the exploration from our Friday Salon Opening event, and get hands-on with the artworks themselves.

The New Real Showcase presents a suite of artworks and interactive exhibits from The New Real making the Artificial Intelligence systems more legible, transparent, fair, and environmentally sound through arts and design.

This Showcase comprises The New Real Observatory Platform, co-created by a team of scientists, artists, engineers and designers; and new horizons for creative machine learning tools and next generation intelligent experiences. The New Real Observatory platform is combining machine learning processing engines with localised global climate data models.

Powered by its conceptual architecture, three artworks have been developed by Inés Cámara Leret, Adam Harvey, and Kizziah McNeill, which investigate the entanglements of people, data, machines and environments.

The works are accompanied by interactive exhibits which engage audiences with research on future applications of AI in the creative sector as well as the border societal questions and implications of the future of emerging technologies.

Come along to be delighted and inspired by transformative ideas and creative insights into the intersection of art and AI. Please note that the exhibition will be accompanied by opportunities to contribute to the research. We will ask you for your consent prior to any contributions you make being used as part of the research. Please speak to our research team should you have any questions.

Location: Café & Studio 2, ONE Tech Hub, Aberdeen, AB10 1JQ 

Time: 12:00 – 16:00

Join us for lunch and two exciting panels: 

The first will feature three investors, including Chris Neumann of the Canadian VC firm Panache Ventures, sharing their knowledge on what makes an attractive investment and how to successfully scale your start-up. 

The second panel will be a spotlight on three local founders and hosted by Chris himself, focusing in on goals, aspirations and where different avenues of funding could support them best. 

We are grateful to Opportunity North East as our partner in helping host and support this event.

Click here to register.

The Scottish Black Talent Summit is the premier equality, diversity and inclusion action event in Scotland, combining a world-class conference and exhibition.

The purpose of the SBT Summit 2022 is to build bridges, connect Black talent, share insights, empower careers making wave and driving the future of work for the Black community, for current leaders, for future leaders and for all generations of Black talent. The ultimate aim is to close the skills gaps in Scotland. In doing so, we will help reduce salary inflation and candidate gazumping job offers. The SBT Summit provides the perfect platform for attendees from training providers, higher education institutions, schools, employers, government and digital and data sector to establish key partnerships and discuss holistic ways to close the skills gap, enhance employability opportunities and drive diversity and inclusion.

SBT Summit will be a one (1) day event covering networking, workshop, and recognition.

Click here to register.

Shoreline of Infinity presents a very special Event Horizon as part of DataFest 2022, in the stunning setting of the Bayes Centre, Edinburgh University. All welcome!

We have:

Glasgow scifi Hip-Hop from Miles Better

Prose from: Ever Dundas reading from her new novel HellSans

Poetry from Jeda Pearl and Ruth Aylett  

and drama from Danielle Farrow and Angela Milton  – A neurodivergent artificial lifeform emerges. Written by Jo Ross-Barrett

Your MC for this evening – Russell ‘Bad Jokes’ Jones

Join us at the Bayes Centre, Edinburgh. Also live online via Youtube (no ticket required for the livestream, but buying a ticket as a donation would be ace!)

Tickets: £0/£5 or pay what you can

Click here to register.

Location: FanDuel UK Collaboration Hub, 2 Freer Street, Fountainbridge, Edinburgh, EH3 9FQ

Audience: Industry, Academia, Students, Those working in Data or Software Engineering roles (no recruiters) 

6.30pm – Networking, food and refreshments

7pm – Welcome

7.15pm – Delivering reliable data: 3 examples of how FanDuel’s Data team overhauled their processes to improve data confidence – Harry Williams, Senior Data Engineer at FanDuel

In this case study, we’ll walk through three specific ways FanDuel’s data team redeveloped their pipelines to increase accuracy, reliability and timeliness of data delivery ahead of the NFL season. Discover how FanDuel approached these challenges, the obstacles they faced along the way, the team’s learnings post-implementation, as well as their advice to others looking to improve their confidence in data.

8pm – The journey of building an automated data platform – Marinos Kintis, Lead Data Engineer at FanDuel

In this talk, we will focus on the journey we went through while building an extensible and self-serving Data Platform in FanDuel. We will present the core, company- and technology-independent principles that played a key role in the build and success of the Platform. Finally, we’ll also look into how this experience informed decisions on other platforms we work on.

8.30 – 9.30pm – Networking and refreshments 

Click here to register.

AI/ML is often used as a black box, where features from training data go in and a prediction comes out. However, in a clinical setting model explainability is at least as important as the models themselves because the predictions are not useful if clinicians have no idea why they are made. Transparency is crucial if ML is to aid clinical decision making in an effective and ethical manner. With the explosion of AI use cases, it is essential to consider model fairness. Model fairness scrutinises AI and determines how fair it is across different population groups. These groups could be gender, age, ethnicity, societal deprivation, and more. The Lenus Data Science team dedicates time to research and implement techniques to understand how their models make predictions. We further explore the fairness of the models we create and develop methods to correct for any inequalities and disparities that the AI may have introduced.

At this event we will introduce our audience to the company Lenus Health and the work we are doing collaboratively with the NHS to use AI as part of routine patient care. We will do a deep dive into the challenges around developing AI ethically, particularly for the high risk use case that is healthcare. We will do some live coding for the audience to demonstrate these challenges, biases, and the methods we have developed to overcome them! We were awarded a NHS Phase 3 AI award for our innovative work in this space and are excited to showcase how we are using AI to make a difference for patients with long term conditions! This will also be a networking event with plenty of opportunities for discussions, collaboration, and recruitment opportunity. Refreshments will be provided!

Click here to register.

The aim of this event is to home in on the value of data sharing across typically siloed entities. When shared, pooled and properly refined, usable data quickly becomes a powerful decision-making tool. Sharing data has consistently been a major challenge in the energy sector, but huge steps forward have already been made. What else can be done to incentivise data sharing and change behaviours?

This engaging event aims to highlight not just successful examples of sharing data from other sectors, but more importantly the challenges and lessons learned along the way. How can the energy sector build on cross-sectoral experience and truly harness the power of our data collectively? The Net Zero Technology Centre develops and deploys technology to accelerate the transition to an affordable energy landscape and is committed to making that future digital. As part of this, we envisage the North Sea as a “smart basin”. We foresee a community of end users being able to source, connect, analyse and visualise data – empowering them to make decisions that increase the efficiency of basin-wide operations.

This event intends to draw on data sharing expertise from practitioners in various sectors and glean insights from delegates in the room that will leave you feeling motivated and inspired!

Click here to register.

The Data Lab and the Digital Health & Care Innovation Centre (DHI) have partnered with the Scottish Dementia Research Consortium (SDRC) to launch an exciting new challenge and funding call focused on technologies and data-driven innovation for brain health and dementia prevention. Join us on Wednesday 02 November 2022, 0930-1230 , in person, at the Mandela Auditorium, Strathclyde Students’ Union, 51 Richmond Street, Glasgow, G1 1XU, for the launch of the Brain Health Technology & Data Challenge as part of Data Fest 2022.

Registration and networking are from 0930 with the event starting at 1000. The aim of the challenge is to establish new collaborative links between Scottish-based businesses and academics across a range of disciplines. This information and networking event will provide attendees with an overview of the challenge areas and the collaborative funding opportunity, as well as providing an excellent networking forum for meeting potential partners interested in this health domain.

At the event, attendees will be provided with more information on:

Scene setting and Challenge overview – Joanne Boyle (DHI) and Dr Mario A Parra (University of Strathclyde)

Funding criteria, rules and project timings – Darran Gardner (The Data Lab)

Future funding and support options (The DHI and The Data Lab) Q&A

We expect this event to be well attended and encourage you to register early to guarantee your place. We are managing event registration through Eventbrite. We only have 100 spaces available to participate in the session so register now to ensure you don’t miss out. We will be filming this event and will upload the footage to our website after the event for on-demand viewing. Registration closes on: Monday 31 October 2022 at 1700. Once registered you will receive a confirmation email, which will contain all the information you need to attend the event. Please make sure you save this in your calendar. We look forward to welcoming you on the day.

Please click here to register.

What makes data visualisations effective for different audiences? How can you communicate a message through data visualisation? And what innovative visualisation methods can you use to enable collaboration? Join us in this 2-hour online workshop to get answers to these questions, and to learn to unlock the power of your data through visualisation.

You will be introduced to key principles of data visualisation, and you will find out about different methods used by experts in this field. You will familiarise yourself with different visualisation techniques and learn how to choose the right one for your data.

You will try your hand at visualising data in a variety of ways, and you will get some inspiration from examples from different areas, such as healthcare and education. This workshop is open to everyone with an interest in data visualisation, including professionals from industry, academia, the public and third sectors. No prior experience in data visualisation or programming is needed.

Max number of participants: 30

Online platform: Zoom

Workshop duration: 2 hours

Click here to register.

This event offers a big picture view of some of the challenges associated with implementing AI, RPA and related applications in the workplace, based on research and industry insight. Participants will be encouraged to think about inclusive aspects of choosing AI-based products and services, and to consider them using the latest standards of practice around AI, including based on Scotland’s AI Strategy.

Facilitators: Dr Luciana Blaha, Assistant Professor in Business Management and Human Computer Interaction, Heriot-Watt University

Luciana’s research investigates Intelligent Automation systems (including AI, RPA and chatbots) and their impact on organisational behaviour, reuniting findings from science and technology studies, business management and computing science. She has delivered guest lectures, seminars and conference presentations for audiences in the UK, Dubai, Taiwan, US and Australia in the areas of Intelligent Automation, Management, AI and Qualitative Research Methods. Currently, her work focuses on the areas of organizational behaviour and Intelligent Automation systems, and AI stakeholder management for good.

Professor Donald Hislop, Professor in the Sociology of Work and Technology in the Business Management Department, University of Aberdeen

Donald’s research is in the relationship between technology and work and how worker’s use of new technologies shapes the character of their work. He currently has a primary interest in how artificial intelligence and robots are shaping managerial, professional and service work. He also has an ongoing interest in the work-related use of mobile communication technologies, particularly with respect to business travel. He has published extensively on these topics via books, journal papers, reports, and blog posts.

Click here to register.

The event will be held over two days on 5th and 6th November 2022.

It will take place in the ONE Tech Hub, Schoolhill, Aberdeen. We will make online attendance available via Zoom.

If the ticket prices are prohibitive please get in touch at and let us know. We can probably assist you to be here!

Please note our policy on reducing the spread of infections diseases such as Covid-19.

This UNconference event will follow the open space format, where participants create the agenda each morning for the sessions that will happen that day. This is the time to pitch your questions to the many people who will be there, and to tell others about your project too. Sessions in open space always work best when there is an interactive aspect so that the participants talk as much as the person chairing the session. This short video will tell you more about open space. The amazing thing is that it scales really well from 20 people to over 1000 people.

Click here to register.

With the support of CodeBase, Data Lab and Barclays Wealth, we are bringing together Investors and Founders across two panels, hosted by the wonderful Alexandra Mancini. Come and hear highlights from the funding landscape on both sides of the pond, as well as from Founders that have raised and their stories.

Panel 1:

Chris Neumann – General Partner at Panache Ventures – North America raising (

Claire Cramm – Investment Analyst at Par Equity – UK raising (

Panel 2:

Leah Hutcheon – Founder and CEO of Appointedd (

Callum Murray – Founder and CEO of Amiqus (

Colin Hewitt – Founder and CEO at Float (

If you have any questions that you would like to see shape the conversation, please contact Alexandra:

We look forward to seeing you there!

Click here to register.