Whether we like it or not, artificial intelligence is increasing its presence in marketing. From the rise in programmatic media to McCann Japan’s...

The Artificial Intelligence Debate: Does Creativity Require Humanity?


Pier One Sydney Harbour
2000 NSW

The Artificial Intelligence Debate


Mark Henley

Mark Henley

Director of Transformation and Digital Strategy, Asia Pacific Adobe

Mark Henley is Adobe’s Director of Transformation and Digital Strategy across Asia Pacific, helping Adobe customers shape their strategy, processes and innovation approaches to meet the opportunities of digital technologies. He guides thought leadership in the region with particular focus on how the emerging capabilities of machine learning, AI and virtual reality can help organisations be more creative and better serve their customers and staff. Before joining Adobe, Mark spent seven years at Fairfax Media as CIO for the Australian Financial Review, Director of Editorial Solutions (Fairfax Metro), and Director of Technology Strategy. Prior to Fairfax, Mark worked in the UK, USA and Australia at startups specialising in ecommerce and subscription solutions. Mark is based in Sydney, Australia. He enjoys cycling, yoga, good tea and a stimulating book, although usually not simultaneously. Mark will be the MC at the VIVID 2017 event "The Artificial Intelligence Debate: Does Creativity Require Humanity?".

Chris Panzetta

Chris Panzetta

Co-Founder and Creative Director of Stories 1st Technology 2nd

Chris Panzetta is co-founder and creative director of Stories 1st Technology 2nd. For the last 8 years they've been experimenting how new technologies can help tell stories, onscreen and off screen, online and offline, in reality and in virtual reality, all to make exploration more entertaining. Every year has been dramatically different and his main challenge is keeping it that way. Chris will be speaking at the event "The Artificial Intelligence Debate: Does Creativity Require Humanity?".

Henry Cho

Henry Cho

Head of UX & AI at Upwire

A veteran user experience professional with over 17 years' experience including 10 years in mobile UX. Since graduating from Startmate (Australia's Y-Combinator), he has been a driving force behind building lean UX practices in Australia at an enterprise level as well as coaching start-ups around Australia through programs like Slingshot and Sydney Genesis.

Henry has a passion for education and has taught hundreds of students directly, running the first UX course in Australia for General Assembly, created online programs for Design Lab in the US and mentors individuals and start-ups both locally and internationally.

Having a deep need to evolve constantly, Henry now has a focus on the next horizon of human computer interaction through conversational interfaces, anticatory design, artificial intelligence and social robotics.

He will be speaking at the VIVID Ideas event "The Artificial Intelligence Debate: Does Creativity Require Creativity?"

Marita Cheng

Marita Cheng

Founder and CEO aubot, Founder Robogals, Founder Aipoly

Marita Cheng was the 2012 Young Australian of the Year and is a technology entrepreneur and women in technology advocate. Marita Cheng is the founder and CEO of 2Mar Robotics, which makes a telepresence robot, Teleport, for kids with cancer in hospital to attend school, people with a disability to attend work and to monitor and socialise with elderly people. As well as telepresence robots, 2Mar does research and development in robotic arms, virtual reality and autonomous mapping and navigation.

2Mar has been recognised on a global scale through the Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia in 2016, while Cheng has been dubbed "the coolest girl at CES 2014" by VentureBeat magazine. Marita has presented Teleport at the M.A.P. International CEO Conference in the Philippines in 2016, MIT Technology Review EmTech Singapore in 2015, and the 2014 World Entrepreneurship Forum in Lyon France.

While studying at Singularity University’s flagship 10-week program, the Graduate Studies Program, located at NASA Ames and on a full scholarship funded by Google, Marita cofounded Aipoly with Alberto Rizzoli. Profiled in TechCrunch within a week of the first prototype being made, Aipoly allows blind people to recognise objects using computer vision and has been downloaded 120,000 times in seven languages since its launch at CES 2016.

Marita was named the 2012 Young Australian of the Year for demonstrating vision and leadership well beyond her years as the founder and executive director of Robogals Global. Noticing the low number of girls in her engineering classes at the University of Melbourne, Marita rounded up her fellow engineering peers and they went to schools to teach girls robotics, as a way to encourage girls into engineering.

While on academic exchange at Imperial College London, Marita expanded the group to London and through innovation and sheer will, Marita then expanded Robogals throughout Australia, the UK, the USA and Japan. The group runs robotics workshops, career talks and various other community activities to introduce young women to engineering.

Robogals has now taught 55,000 girls from 11 countries our robotics workshops across 32 chapters. Robogals has been internationally recognised though the Global Engineering Deans Council Diversity in Engineering Award (2014), Grace Hopper Celebration’s Anita Borg Change Agent Award (2011), and the International Youth Foundation’s YouthActionNet Fellowship (2011).

Marita regularly travels around Australia presenting her work including appearing on Q&A on ABC beside two Nobel Laureates and the Chief Scientist of Australia (TV audience 600,000), and alongside Ashton Kutcher at Lenovo’s #TechMyWay (online audience 35,000). She has also presented overseas at Foxconn's H.Spectrum by Yonglin Healthcare Startup Conference in Taiwan (2016), the 37th Kumon Japan Instructors Conference in Japan (2016), the World Engineering Education Forum in Dubai (2014), and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts' World Conference in Hong Kong (2014).

Marita was born in Cairns, Queensland, Australia. She grew up in housing commission with her brother and single-parent mother, who worked as a hotel room cleaner. She graduated from high school in 2006 in the top 0.2% of the nation, and that year was awarded Cairns Young Citizen of the Year for her volunteering and extra-curricula efforts, which included winning awards for mathematics, Japanese and piano. Marita speaks English, Cantonese and Japanese.

Marita has a Bachelor of Engineering (Mechatronics)/Bachelor of Computer Science from the University of Melbourne. She serves on the boards of Robogals Global, the Foundation for Young Australians, and RMIT's New Enterprise Investment Fund, where she helps decide on startup investments, the Victorian State Innovation Expert Panel, and the Clinton Health Access Initiative's Tech Advisory Board. In her spare time, Marita enjoys reading, travelling and daydreaming. 

Marita will be speaking at the VIVID Ideas event, "The Artificial Intelligence Debate: Does Creativity Require Humanity?"

Katharine McLennan

Katharine McLennan

Senior Vice President, People & Culture at Cochlear

Katharine McLennan has a career that spans corporate strategy, execution and leadership. Her specialty is facilitating executive teams in the integration of strategy, operations, team dynamics and self-transformation; integrating these practices with the science of the brain and the gut and the philosophies of our ancient ancestors.     

Prior to Cochlear, her most recent corporate role was head of the Global Leadership Academy for QBE, where she designed and led five levels of leadership development across QBE’s 40 countries. Prior to that, Katharine was executive general manager, Talent and Business Unit HR for Commonwealth Bank of Australia. Here, she was responsible for talent acquisition and retention strategies, succession planning, talent development and workforce planning. She also line-managed the heads of HR for the nine major business units of all of CBA.

Prior to CBA, Katharine spent 10 years in leadership consulting, providing advisory services on behalf of three major organisations: Heidrick & Struggles, the Mettle Group and PricewaterhouseCoopers. Through this work, she led projects in succession planning, CEO team strategy facilitation and executive assessment and development for ASX Top 50 clients, helping these clients to manage their internal pipeline. Katharine’s clients have included CBA, GPT, Ergon Energy, PwC, AGL, Qantas, Macquarie Bank, Telstra, NBN, CSR, Leighton, Gilbert & Tobin, Minter Ellison, Bankwest, UBS, Westpac, Medicare/Centrelink and Ernst & Young.

Before her leadership consulting years, Katharine spent four years as the key architect and implementer of the Sydney Organising Committee for the Olympic Games operational strategy. In this role she led the operational planning process for the venue operations and was the main facilitator on all operational planning and contingency exercises within the Sydney organisation. She continues today to advise the IOC and all organising committees in their operational planning, workforce strategies and leadership development.

In the early '90s, Katharine worked for Booz Allen & Hamilton in Australia and New Zealand, driving corporate growth strategies, business reconstruction and process re-engineering across industries such as health care, banking, telecommunications and logistics. Clients included CBA, NAB, Tubemakers, TNT, Telstra, Royal Adelaide Hospital, the Alfred Hospital and Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Katharine has a Bachelor of Science with Honours (neuroscience & history) from Duke University, a Master of Arts (political science) from the University of New South Wales and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) from Stanford University, graduating with top class honours in all three degrees.

With a strong passion for the university-corporate connection, Katharine sits on the Advisory Board of the UTS Business School under Dean Roy Green and just retired as a Director of the MINDD Foundation (mindd.org), an organisation focused on solving children’s health challenges through integrative medicine.  She has recently joined the Board of Petrea King’s Quest for Life Foundation, as she is a fervent advocate for mental wellness and recovery from addiction, two of the focus points amongst others that the foundation is serving in Australia. 

Katharine is a qualified psychotherapist.

Access and Inclusion

  • Wheelchair Accessible - Access to the venue is suitable for wheelchairs (toilets, ramps/lifts etc.) and designated wheelchair spaces are available.

Event Details

Whether we like it or not, artificial intelligence is increasing its presence in marketing. From the rise in programmatic media to McCann Japan’s artificial creative director, we have seen leaps and bounds in technology over the past decade. There is talk of marketers and creatives now needing to think about “future proofing” their skills so they do not become replaced by software.

So what is the role of humans in the future of creative industries? With a high enough level of personalisation engendered by automated software, do marketers still need to rely on creative concepts to attract attention? 

We’ve invited a panel of industry and academic experts to debate the future of their industries. This event will try and address the big questions: what is the limit of AI? And what will the landscape look like in the next ten years? Or twenty? Without a sense of empathy and conscience, can we really trust a machine?

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Access and Inclusion

  • Wheelchair Accessible - Access to the venue is suitable for wheelchairs (toilets, ramps/lifts etc.) and designated wheelchair spaces are available.