Madeleine Waller and Elfia Bezou Vrakatseli give workshop at ACM womENcourage Conference 2023

12th January 2024 | News, Student News

News > Madeleine Waller and Elfia Bezou Vrakatseli give workshop at ACM womENcourage Conference 2023

STAI CDT students Madeleine Waller and Elfia Bezou Vrakatseli gave a workshop at the 10th ACM womENcourage conference in Trondheim, Norway.  

The conference, focused on fostering connections among women in various STEM fields and supporting their journey in computing, revolved around the theme Computing Connecting Everyone. This theme emphasised computing as a tool to bring together diverse minds and cultures from academia and industry, particularly poignant in a world seeking reconnection after the pandemic.   

Madeleine and Elfia’s workshop was titled ‘Connecting using Computational Argumentation: An Interactive Workshop’. Rooted in the AI domain, this workshop emphasised computational methods to structure and evaluate arguments across various sectors such as law and healthcare to facilitate transparent decision-making processes. 

Madeleine and Elfia enjoyed attending the three day conference, which included a Hackathon and EUGAIN workshop. In the hackathon, they teamed up with students from different institutions, working on the topic Social Sustainability through Integration and Inclusion – Addressing Future Challenges in Computer Science. The EUGAIN workshop broadened their horizons with a diverse range of perspectives during its panel discussion, focusing on enhancing gender balance across all levels of the Informatics field. This was achieved through the creation of a European network committed to promoting gender balance within their respective countries and research communities. 

They both also demonstrated their research during the poster presentation sessions, seizing opportunities to engage in discussions with attendees from various institutions regarding their work. Elfia showcased Debating Ethics: Enhancing Human & Human-AI Dialogue, and Madeleine presented Bias in Binary Classification: An Argumentation-based Approach to Detection, Explanation, and Mitigation

Elfia presenting at the poster presentation

Madeleine and Elfia broadened their professional networks and drew inspiration from the womENcourage steering committee and other notable attendees. They were motivated by the success stories of women in STEM and viewed the participation in the conference as not just an opportunity, but a substantial step forward in augmenting the presence of women in the global STEM field.