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COMPUTING, MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLBEING

Speaker: Rafael Calvo, University of Sydney Seminar Date: Tuesday 22 March 2016, 12.00pm Abstract: There is increased awareness amongst computing professionals that the tools we build have an impact on people’s psychological wellbeing and mental health.

AI has generally focused on improving productivity and therefore wealth, but more recently, more humanistic variables are beginning to be taken into account. Can AI be used to understand what drives human emotion? Can we integrate it into systems that promote empathy and compassion?  These and other determinants of psychological wellbeing are being used to promote flourishing as part of what we call “Positive Computing”. But when it comes to psychological wellness, AI is having an impact beyond promotion. For example, it has already been shown to be valuable for risk detection and even treatment of mental illness. Take, for example, new systems that leverage Natural Language Processing and AI to detect depression and anxiety from social media data. In this seminar I will discuss projects underway in our research lab and across the field that cover the spectrum of AI innovation for psychological wellbeing.

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