Center for Analytics Impact Hosts AI Roundtable and Executive Forum

6.4.2024 Article, Center for Analytics Impact, Faculty News, School News
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The Center for Analytics Impact at the Wake Forest School of Business recently held two AI events to address the growing need for data, computer and human infrastructure in the wake of booming Artificial Intelligence technology and application across industry.

Hosted in conjunction with MichaelBest, a Raleigh Law Firm, and the Defense Alliance of North Carolina, the AI Infrastructure Roundtable emphasized the case for AI Infrastructure, the need to raise awareness of how quickly things are changing, and provided collaboration opportunities across industry, government, and academia. It was the seventh of eight roundtable discussions taking place across the state of North Carolina exploring the infrastructure needed to realize AI’s potential.

According to Shannon McKeen, Professor of the Practice & Executive Director of the Center for Analytics Impact, attendees heard about the growing demands for computing power, storage, and data transmission to handle the massive data and processing requirements for AI.

“These demands will only accelerate as organizations, both public and private, leverage AI’s forecasted productivity enhancements,” said McKeen. “Highlighted examples included using machine learning for cancer diagnosis and deploying drones with lower-level radar ahead of EMS for quicker, more informed responses. Beyond traditional IT infrastructure, AI also requires robust power sources and human capital.”

“Also, I’d like to give special thanks to Lyle Gravatt, Kyle Snyder of MichaelBest, and Phil Williams from the Defense Alliance of North Carolina for facilitating insightful speaker sessions.”

Additionally, the Center hosted an “AI for Executives” forum focused on how organizations can best equip themselves to stay on top of relevant AI trends. Offering a comprehensive exploration of artificial intelligence from its historical evolution to present-day practical applications, the session was led by McKeen alongside Professor of the Practice Mike Ames and Fellow Yiheng An.

Multiple faculty and staff from the School of Business were present, along with several local partners and vendors who were invited to gain valuable insights on how AI has already and will continue to shape the future of industry everywhere.

“The session on AI presented by Shannon McKeen, Mike Ames and Yiheng An, was informative and engaging as evidenced by the great discussion it generated with our Practicum Partners from Deloitte, The Winston-Salem Fire Department, Merchant Distributors, and SAS,” said Jeff Camm, Senior Associate Dean for Faculty and Research at the School of Business.

“The session triggered insightful discussions in the audience, consisting of industry partners and Wake faculty, staff, and students,” said Pelin Pekgun, Professor of Analytics at the School of Business. “The demonstration of text-to-image models using DALL-E was also particularly interesting. Overall, it was a valuable experience that highlighted the potential role of AI in shaping the future of business.”

The Wake Forest University Center for Analytics Impact (CAI) examines factors that lead to the successful application of analytics to improve the leadership and operations of organizations. The Center also provides continuing education opportunities for corporations around effective influencing with analytics, storytelling, analytics leadership and how to be successful in implementing impactful analytics.