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Artificial intelligence and the future of work

Plenary / Panel
english language

The automation of ‘knowledge work’ brings major changes to companies and alters the way we understand work itself. What will the workplace of the future look like once humans and machines interact on a cognitive level? As we redefine our perception of the division of labour, what role will the managers of the future play?


Founder and President, Global Peter Drucker Forum, Vienna Introduction
Reader, Department of Computer Science, University of Bath
Digital Anthropologist and Author, Red Thread Inc., Paris
Chief Business Strategist, IBM Watson Group, New York
Chairman of the Management Board, Erste Group Bank AG, Vienna
Senior Editor, Harvard University Press; Author, Only Humans Need Apply, Cambridge Chair

Dr. Richard STRAUB

Founder and President, Global Peter Drucker Forum, Vienna

1984-1987 Director, PC Sales IBM Austria
1987-1992 Director, PC Unit, IBM Austria
1993-1994 Assistant General Manager, PC Marketing, IBM EMEA
1994-1995 Regional Director, PC IBM Central Europe and Russia
1996-1997 Director, IBM Global Marketing and Sales Institute, Belgium
1997-2001 Chief Learning Officer, IBM Global Sales and Distribution Group
2001-2005 Director, Learning Solutions, IBM EMEA
since 2006 Associate Director, Corporate Services EFMD
since 2006 Senior Adviser, IBM Global Education Industry
since 2006 Senior Adviser to the Chairman, IBM EMEA
since 2008 President, Peter Drucker Society Europe

Ph.D. Joanna J. BRYSON

Reader, Department of Computer Science, University of Bath

1986 BA in Behavioral Science, The College of the University of Chicago
1986-1988 Sole technical employee, Lawrence I Schulman & Co. / First Options of Chicago
1988-1991 Project Leader for automating the exchange-floor staff, A M Investors, Chicago
1992 MSc in Artificial Intelligence, The University of Edinburgh
1999-2000 Research Assistant, Human Communication Research Center, University of Edinburgh
2000 MPhil in Psychology, The University of Edinburgh
2001 PhD in Computer Science, The Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2001-2002 Postdoctoral Fellow, Primate Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory, Harvard University, Cambridge
2002-2010 Lecturer B (Assistant Professor), Department of Computer Science, University of Bath
2007-2009 Visiting Research Fellow, Methods and Data Institute, University of Nottingham
2007-2009 Resident Faculty and Hans Przibram Fellow, The Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research, Vienna
2010 Visiting Research Fellow, Department of Anthropology, Oxford University
since 2010 Reader (Associate Professor), Department of Computer Science, University of Bath
2011-2013 Visiting Research Fellow, Mannheimer Zentrum für Europäische Sozialforschung, University Mannheim
2015-2017 Visiting Fellow, CITP - Center for Information Technology Policy, Princeton University


Digital Anthropologist and Author, Red Thread Inc., Paris

2004-2006 Bchelor of Arts, Business Administration and Management, Ivey Business School at Western University, London (Ontario)
2006 Exchange Program, Media & Communications, HEC - Hautes Etudes Commerciales, Paris
2006 Research Analyst & Media Strategist, New Paradigm Learning Corporation, St. Petersburg (Florida)
2006-2008 Research Analyst & Project Manager, Hotspex Market Research, Toronto
2008-2009 Indipendent Consultant
2009-2011 Associate Director, Technology Pioneers, World Economic Forum, Geneva
since 2012 Founder, Digital Foresight & Innovation Strategist, Red Thread Inc., Paris
since 2014 Adjunct Professor, Innovation & Emerging Business Models, Finance & Economics MBA Program, Sciences Po, Paris


Chief Business Strategist, IBM Watson Group, New York

since 1982 Professional Freelance Photographer
1986-1994 Managing Consultant, Global Bank, Emerging Market Start-Up Manager, Big Five Consulting Firm'
1995-1997 Sales & Marketing Manager US West Coast; Transformation Manager, AT&T
1997-2001 Director Europe, Relationship Technologies, BI & CRM, Teradata
2001-2002 IBM Internal Sales Transformation Team Executive, IBM
2003-2004 Executive Principal IBM Internal Sales Transformation, IBM
2004-2007 Business Intelligence Practice Partner Nordic, IBM
2007-2010 Analytics Consulting Leader West & South Europe, IBM
2010-2014 Global Strategist, Big Data Analytics & Optimization, IBM
since 2014 Chief Business Strategist, IBM Watson Group, New York

Mag. Andreas TREICHL

Chairman of the Management Board, Erste Group Bank AG, Vienna

1975 Master's Degree in Economics, University of Vienna
1976-1977 Trainee programmes at Citibank, Morgan Stanley and Brown Brothers Harriman, New York
1977-1994 Various management positions at Chase Manhatten Bank in New York, Brussels, Athens and Vienna
1994-1997 Member of the Management Board, Erste oesterreichische Spar-Casse, Vienna
1997-2008 Chairman of the Management Board, Erste oesterreichische Spar-Casse, Vienna
since 2008 Chairman of the Management Board, Erste Group Bank AG, Vienna


Senior Editor, Harvard University Press; Author, Only Humans Need Apply, Cambridge

 Julia Kirby is a senior editor at Harvard University Press, focused on helping research-based books by scholarly authors reach broad audiences and influence current thinking. She joined HUP after a fifteen-year career at Harvard Business Review, where she worked with hundreds of management thinkers over the years to bring their ideas to practitioners across sectors of the economy and all around the globe. Her newest book, with Tom Davenport, is Only Humans Need Apply: Winners and Losers in the Age of Smart Machines (Harper Collins, May 2016). She also coauthored (with Chris Meyer) the 2012 book Standing on Sun: How the Explosion of Capitalism Abroad Will Change Business Everywhere, praised by The Financial Times as one of the best business books of its year. Prior to HBR, Julia worked in the management consulting industry, producing and packaging insights on emerging technologies, strategy, marketing, talent management, and leadership.

Economic Symposium

show timetable


10:00 - 12:30Charity Soccer Match - Good Game, Good PurposeSocial
14:00 - 14:30OpeningPlenary
14:30 - 15:30Conflict or cooperation? The human factor in the economyPlenary
15:30 - 16:15Meet the Speaker: Alex 'Sandy' PentlandPlenary
15:30 - 16:15Meet the Speaker: Ernst FehrPlenary
16:15 - 17:45Business 2050: Europe's search for the competitive edgePlenary
18:30 - 20:00ecoplus and "So schmeckt Niederösterreich" Lower Austria EveningSocial
20:00 - 22:00The Alpbach Debate: globalisation and free tradePlenary


08:00 - 09:0017th management club Business BreakfastPartner
08:45 - 11:30Talk on the Mountain: Decide! Quickly! And correctly!Partner
09:00 - 10:30Artificial intelligence and the future of workPlenary
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 01: Basic income or welfare state?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 02: Low productivity growth despite the digital revolution? Lessons for EuropeBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 03: Competition boosts business. Cooperation spurs prices?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 04: The machine colleague - friend or foe?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 05: Climate protection & economy. (No) contradiction?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 06: Foreign direct investments - curse or blessing?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 07: Leadership in complex times: doing the splits between conflict and cooperationBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 08: Business location vs. intact environment - an irresolvable conflict?Breakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 09: "The power of we": conflict and cooperation between men and women in the economyBreakout
11:00 - 13:30Breakout Session 10: It's the innovation, stupid! How to become a successful entrepreneur in the digital ageBreakout
13:30 - 15:00Lunch ReceptionSocial
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 11: International trade: cooperation vs. autonomyBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 12: The social partnership: There's no time for fussing and fighting, my friend!Breakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 13: Talking climate: irritation and innovation engine for economy and societyBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 14: Homo faber digitalis: the working (wo)man in the global digital marketBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 15: Cooperation vs. competition: economic policy in the EUBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 16: Trends and counter-trends - conflict and cooperation in the economyBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 17: Jailhouse rocks? Or wouldn't it be better to break out of the prisoner's dilemma altogether?Breakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 18: How the lack of IT and network security threatens the European digital economyBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 19: Conflict through cooperation: legal liability for human rights abuses in global supply chainsBreakout
15:00 - 17:30Breakout Session 20: There can only be one? Revisiting corporate successionBreakout
18:00 - 19:30Don't confuse trying with doing!Plenary
19:00 - 20:30Fireside Talk: Minimum wage - curse or blessing?Partner
22:00 - 00:00Magenta NightSocial


08:00 - 10:30Alpbach Hike: resources - from conflict potential to potential innovationPlenary
08:00 - 09:00Breakfast ClubPartner
08:30 - 09:30"Kater" BreakfastPartner
10:45 - 11:45We have learned nothing from the crisis!Plenary
11:45 - 12:30Conflict and cooperation in the social partnershipPlenary
16:30 - 20:00Economic DialoguePartner