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Event Details

Date: 3rd March 2018

Time: 1300 - 1900

Venue: Old Divinity School, University of Cambridge, St Johns St, Cambridge CB2 1TP

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Keynote Speakers

Sir Michael Batty

The Age of the Smart City

The smart cities movement defines a sea change in the way we will live in cities and the way they will function in the 21st century and beyond. Cities are becoming computable and automated at every level of their operation and there is a massive disconnect emerging between their physical form and social process. No one knows where this transition from a world based on energy to one based on information, will end up or when the recent wave of change in economic structure that appeared with the ‘big bang’ and massive deregulation in the 1980s culminating in the great recession, will work itself out. In this talk, I will sketch the waves that have dominated technological change during the last 250 years, drawing on ideas suggested by Kondratieff and Schumpeter but beginning by focussing on the current wave – the so-called Fifth Kondratieff – which is dominated by the internet.

This however is ending and a sixth wave which I call the Age of the Smart City is beginning to encapsulate and underpin everything we do in ways that were first envisaged by the earliest advocates of the universal machine such as Alan Turing and Vannevar Bush. I will sketch the transition showing how new technologies are being integrated with one another, how the reliance on generating and extracting data, thence information, about the city is changing the way we understand our own spatial behaviours, and how the functions of the future city will be increasingly disconnected from its form.

Dr Paolo Bombelli

Electricity from living organisms

Living organisms (both photosynthetic and heterotrophic) are able to generate electrical current that can be harvested by a suitable electrochemical setup. This forms the basis of Bio Electrochemical Systems (BESs). The current output obtained from these systems has increased substantially over the last few years, with the maximum reported being in the region of ~4A m-2 and ~70A m-2, for the systems operated with photosynthetic and heterotrophic organisms receptively. Bio Electrochemical Systems could constitute a powerful educational tool for disseminating knowledge related with energy and sustainability in schools. As well as being an attractive tool for teaching, these devices may be useful source of electricity in, for example, off-grid locations. In my talk I will also discuss the use of BESs to power camera trap in the Peruvian tropical forest and to run environmental sensor for wastewater monitoring in South India.

Undergraduate Speakers

9 undergraduate students from the University of Cambridge will be giving accessible talks on something they're passionate about.
These talks form the main part of the conference, and they're what IN[SCI]TE's all about.
We will be constantly updating this list of talks:


March 3rd

Eleanor Sheekey

Much ado about Nanog' - uniting stem cells and epigenetics

David Kovacs

Theoretical chemistry, Application of Machine Learning in Science

Keynote by Sir Michael Batty


Giulia Utzeri

Emotion processing in native and non-native languages

Stephen Cole

Probing the role of neurogranin in learning and memory by computational modelling

William Drake

Cold atomic Physics, Quantum Physics and links with optics

Mark Di Giovanni

Developing a method to quantify tumour response to treatment using hyperpolarized 13C magnetic resonance imaging

Mikey Lavelle

Web Composites - Composite Weaving Machine

Khanh Nguyen & Elena Rastorgueva

Machine Learning for Mandarin Tone Classification

Richard Simon

Air Pollution in Cambridge using a Low-Cost Sensor Network

Keynote by Dr Paolo Bombelli