Location: Bank of Ireland Workspace, Hamilton Building Trinity College Dublin

Date: 8 Mar

To mark International Women's Day (IWD) on Thursday, 8th March 2018, the ADAPT Centre for Digital Content Technologies is lauching its annual #WomenOfADAPT series, highlighting the impressive achievements of the women working within the world leading SFI Research Centre. Launching the series is a panel discussion featuring 5 inspiring women who are working in various roles in technology and the digital content industry.


9:45 - 10.15 Networking and Breakfast

10.15- 11.00 Panel Discussion followed by a Q&A session


Chair - Dr Máire Brophy, European Research Manager

Máire is responsible for developing and driving the ADAPT Centre’s strategy for securing significant EU research funding in conjunction with ADAPT’s CEO/Director, Associate Directors, lead PIs and the EU team. Responsibilities of their roles include the identification and communication of future funding opportunities, developing pathways to influence work programmes and the European research agenda, the coordination of centre-wide applications for EU funding, as well as supporting other research funding applications in conjunction with PIs. Máire has a PhD in political theory and worked in pre and post award EU funding and research management for over 7 years, working across disciplines in STEM and SSH.

Clare Conran - Senior Project Manager

Clare is responsible for driving industry collaboration projects though the full SDLC using an agile development framework. On a day-to- day basis Clare and her team of project managers are responsible for shepherding spokes industry partnered projects from definition, requirements gathering, implementation to delivery while also providing regular oversight reports to partners and internal stakeholders. Clare has more than a decade of commercial experience with diverse skills from both project management and software development roles affording her a holistic understanding of the software development process.

Dr Sabina Brennan - Pyschologist and Science Communicator

Sabina Brennan is a psychologist, innovative public educator and experienced communicator with a unique skill mix acquired over her career working in the private sector, in media and most recently in academia.

Her scientific research focuses on understanding dementia risk and protective factors to establish how decline in cognitive function might be prevented or delayed. She is passionate about engaging people in an educational preventative context.

She has secured considerable research funding and was part of the applicant team to secure the largest philanthropic grant in Irish history (138million). As an independent PI she coordinated an FP7 project and has led multiple, multi-national, multi-disciplinary research projects.
She was the inaugural recipient of Science Foundation Ireland’s Award for Outstanding Contribution to STEM Communication and received the Provost’s award in recognition of her innovation for social impact.

Dr Teresa Lynn - Research Fellow

Teresa is a postdoctoral researcher at ADAPT. She holds both a BSc and a PhD in Computational Linguistics from DCU. Her PhD on syntactic parsing of the Irish language, was also awarded by Macquarie University Sydney under a cotutelle agreement. Teresa also worked in industry for several years, namely in the areas of localisation, NLP and machine translation. Her current research
interests lie in NLP, parsing, treebank development and developing resources for Irish language technology.

Dr Ilaria Torre - Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Research Fellow

Ilaria is a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Postdoctoral Research Fellow in the EDGE programme. Her broad research interest lies in the amazing capabilities that humans have to convey a very wide range of meanings with only a limited set of available phonemes and with very small changes in the speech signal. Her interest is focused on how such minimal changes – which very often a third-party listener barely notices – are perceived and immediately and unconsciously reacted upon by the listener they are directed to.

The question that drives her research then is: what happens when speech is conveyed by a machine, for example a computer or a robot? In her EDGE project at the Sigmedia lab Ilaria studies the effect of mismatched audio-visual emotional expression in Human-Machine Interaction on the human interaction partner. What happens if an avatar’s face is smiling, but its voice is not?

Before joining the EDGE project, Ilaria obtained a PhD in Psychology from Plymouth University, with research on the effect of different voice characteristics – accent, prosody, naturalness – on trust towards virtual agents and robots. She also holds a Master’s in Phonetics and Phonology from the University of York and a Bachelor’s in Languages and Linguistic Sciences from the Catholic University
of Milan. Currently Ilaria’s research is part of the exhibition, ‘FAKE’ in the Science Gallery.