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"WAITALK: The Digital Assistant – Hype vs. Reality " - THANK YOU, LAUSANNE!


The year 2019 started of with the Women in AI launch in Switzerland. We had the

great opportunity to launch during the Applied Machine Learning Days, a

fantastic conference organized by the EPFL University, Ecole polytechnique

fédérale de Lausanne. With Garry Kasparov or Zeynep Tufekci, two of many

luminaries in the wide field of AI, this event held great promises and it definitely

did not disappoint in any matter.

Marisa Tschopp, WAI Ambassador Switzerland decided to take the topic of

conversational AI, as this is one of her areas of expertise and a topic, even non-

experts can relate to. It should be an event interesting for everyone, from novice

to expert. A challenge, but definitely worth the effort.


With an organizing team of six volunteers and other helpers we managed to set

up a great event with over 200 registrations, and about actual 140 attendees.

This video shows the open and inspiring atmosphere of the WAItalk and the



"We are leaving in a biased world and wAI were created to be more gender-inclusive AI and increase female participation” Hanan Salam, co-founder of Women in AI


Our first speaker Andreea Hossmann @ Swisscom opened the event and shared how to optimize the use of a bot. Keep it simple:

  • What can the bot do?

  • Why should I use the bot vs. other options?

  • How fast does the bot solve the problem?


3D Mixed Reality AI Bot Portia made her debut on stage! Her live-streamed Q&A and presentation focused on tech and business issues facing her and her kin as emerging tech.


This is the start of Women in AI in Switzerland and we are looking forward to a vibrant community, where we support and inspire each other. At the very end Marisa Tschopp asks the attendees “Do you trust AI?”

Only 5 of 140 indicated a high level of trust. Does this come at a surprise for you?

In the context of AI, there is a critical underlying assumption: "No trust, No Use". Since AI holds great promises (as well as dangers though), tech-companies and AI enthusiast are especially concerned about how to build trust in AI to foster adoption or usage. Trust seems like the lasting, kind of mysterious, competitive edge.


These are exciting times for us. Our network is about to start and we look forward to organizing further meetups in different areas, from the Romandie to Zurich. If you would like to be part of the organizing team, ping us!

Join Women in AI to create an impact on how to build trustworthy products, towards AI that benefits global society.



Connect with our Ambassador for Women in AI in Switzerland, Marisa Tschopp, Researcher at scip ag.

The WAI Team



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