Public Event

The Era of Artificial Intelligence–CANCELED
Thursday, December 13, 2018
Foellinger Great Hall, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts
500 S. Goodwin
Urbana (View Map)

Kai-Fu Lee
Chairman and CEO, Sinovation Ventures

Kai-Fu Lee has canceled his visit to Illinois due to an urgent business meeting

In this presentation, Dr. Kai-Fu Lee will talk about the four waves of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and how AI will permeate every part of our lives in the next decade.  He will also discuss how this will be different from previous technology revolutions — it will be faster and be driven by not one superpower, but two (US and China).  AI will add $16 trillion to our global GDP, but also cause many challenges that will be hard to solve.  He will talk in particular about AI replacing routine jobs — the consequences, the proposed solutions that don’t work (such as UBI), and end with a blueprint of co-existence between humans and AI.

AI Superpowers: China, Silicon Valley, and the New World Order will be available for purchase before and after the talk.

Cosponsored by Center for Advanced Study, College of Engineering, Coordinated Science Laboratory, Department of Computer Science, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts

This lecture is part of the CAS @ 60 series

Dr. Kai-Fu Lee is the Chairman and CEO of Sinovation Ventures ( and President of Sinovation Venture’s Artificial Intelligence Institute. Sinovation Ventures, managing US$2 billion dual currency investment funds, is a leading venture capital firm focusing on developing the next generation of Chinese high-tech companies. Prior to founding Sinovation in 2009, Dr. Lee was the President of Google China. Previously, he held executive positions at Microsoft, SGI, and Apple. Dr. Lee received his B.S. in Computer Science from Columbia University, Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University, as well as honorary doctorates from both Carnegie Mellon and the City University of Hong Kong. He is also a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and has over 50 million followers  on social media.

In the field of artificial intelligence, Dr. Lee built one of the first game playing programs to defeat a world champion (1988, Othello), as well as the world’s first large-vocabulary, speaker-independent continuous speech recognition system.  Dr. Lee founded Microsoft Research China, which was named as the hottest research lab by MIT Technology Review. Later renamed Microsoft Research Asia, this institute trained the great majority of AI leaders in China, including CTOs or AI heads at Baidu, Tencent, Alibaba, Lenovo, Huawei, and Haier. While with Apple, Dr. Lee led AI projects in speech and natural language, which have been featured on Good Morning America on ABC Television and the front page of Wall Street Journal. He has authored 10 U.S. patents, and more than 100 journal and conference papers. Altogether, Dr. Lee has been in artificial intelligence research, development, and investment for more than 30 years. 

Recent TED talk