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Futurologist and AI expert to headline conference speaker programme

The speaker programme at the British and Irish Hearing Instrument Manufacturers Association (BIHIMA) conference in May will be headlined by the futurologist and “historian of the future” Dr James Bellini, and Nicola Palmarini, a leading researcher for IBM in the role of artificial intelligence (AI) in healthy ageing.
The conference on 11 and 12 May 2018, called ‘The Future of Hearing Technology’, will kick off with a keynote address from Dr Bellini who will use his significant experience in tracking trends and historical trajectories, combined with a knowledge of the latest global developments, to paint a picture of macro changes that will affect consumers before honing in on technological advances with particular reference to hearing health care.

Nicola Palmarini will provide an inspiring start to the proceedings on day two with a speech about how new technologies, from AI to voice-first devices, can support and engage the world’s ageing population, at the same time as looking at the challenges around privacy and the need for human interaction.

Other speakers include Curtis Alcock, founder of the online hearing think tank Audira, and Dr Wayne Staab, founding partner and editor of the Hearing Health and Technology Matters website, who will address the important issue of the continuing role of trained audiologists even in an increasingly commercialized and technology-driven industry.

In addition there will be an interactive workshop programme, delivered in partnership with BSHAA, who will be awarding CPD points for attendance, which will involve looking at the future of audiology through the lens of other sectors such as general practice and retail. 

Furthermore, delegates will get to experience the very latest approach to public speaking through a series of PechaKucha presentations – a contemporary style of presentation, originating in Tokyo, involving 20 slides with just 20 seconds to speak per slide – to be given by the BIHIMA manufacturers on a range of innovative R&D topics. 

The BIHIMA conference takes place on Friday 11 and Saturday 12 May 2018, at Edgbaston Cricket Ground in Birmingham. Tickets can be purchased at

For more information and to download the agenda for the conference visit

Futurologist and AI expert to headline conference speaker programme