Hi! PARIS Symposium on AI and Social Sciences 2022

Symposium on AI and Social Sciences: a new international event led by Hi! PARIS

From June 8 to 10, 2022, Hi! PARIS was pleased to hold the first edition of the Hi! PARIS Symposium on AI and Social Sciences at ENSAE (École Nationale de la Statistique et de l’Administration Économique) near Paris, in Palaiseau. This year, the symposium revolved around the themes of AI and economics.

Today, the fields of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning are drastically changing science and society in unprecedented ways. These advanced technologies have created a new paradigm for social sciences and provide exciting opportunities. Around the world, researchers are actively looking to tap into their potential and effectively harness their capabilities to forge innovative approaches and investigate new research topics. 

 The Symposium on AI and Society is a new recurring international scientific event organized by Hi! Paris. It supports a multidisciplinary approach and aims to showcase cutting-edge research at the crossroads of AI, data science and the social sciences 

 Artificial intelligence is not an isolated field, it inherently involves multidisciplinary research to answer very strong economic needs”, explains Vianney Perchet, professor at ENSAE and co-organizer of the Symposium. This multidisciplinary approach is one of the unique and defining features of Hi! Paris and the motive for organizing such an event. By bringing together renowned scientists from different fields of science, the Symposium on AI and Society means to deliver new scientific insights and promote national and international collaborations.

This initiative is the first of its kind in France. According to Vianney Perchet, “there is no other event in the country in which researchers from the fields of AI and the social sciences have the opportunity to meet. Unlike in other countries, these scientific communities in France are still focused on their respective fields and there is a crucial need to bring them together.  

To kick-start this 1st edition, Hi! Paris chose to focus on the disruptive changes brought by AI and machine learning in the world of economics. These ground-breaking tools provide new opportunities to answer the rising needs and challenges of businesses and economic policy makers in every sector. The topics of the presentations included predictive modeling, digital platforms, online markets, data-driven decision making, optimal auctions, collaborative machine learning, optimal transport, mechanism design, microeconomics, online learning, and many more.

This first edition of the Symposium on AI and Society invited 24 international keynote speakers working in AI, machine learning or economics. It brought together renowned scientists from Europe, the United-States, the Middle-East and South America. The researchers represented no less than 20 prestigious universities, research institutes or corporations such as Berkeley, Yale, MIT, Princeton, Sciences Po, Technion, TU Berlin, Università degli Studi di Milano or Microsoft. The organizers actively worked to foster an inclusive and balanced community and in particular, to support emerging researchers. More importantly, as Nicolas Vieille, professor at HEC and co-organizer of the event, explains, “the specialists evenly came from the field of AI/machine learning and from the field of economics to create a dialogue between the two scientific communities”.  

Across three days, the distinguished scientists were pleased to share their research and expertise in their respective fields. The Symposium on AI and Society was open to a wide audience. It was designed as an in-person event to cultivate an interactive and collective dynamic between participants and facilitate networking opportunities. “One of the specificities of this symposium is that, unlike other conferences, we chose to only include plenary sessions to share the multidisciplinary perspectives of the top-level speakers with all attendees”, says Nicolas Vieille. Admission was free to promote access to all participants. All in all, the event drew around 150 researchers and students both from the academic world and the private sector, and from a broad range of disciplines.

In the words of Vianney Perchet, “We are very grateful to all the researchers, partner institutions and sponsors for making this capital event possible. We look forward to our collaboration in the coming years”. 

Following the success of this first edition, subsequent events are already on the table. The Symposium on AI and Society is set to become a key regular event and international gathering. Upcoming editions will focus on new themes to further promote synergies between AI, data science and the social sciences and foster international collaborations between different scientific communities.