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Capitalising on AI & Robotics for a Better Future

Date: 1 September 2023 (Friday)
Time: 14:30 – 17:00 (HKT, GMT+8) (Registration starts at 2:00pm)
Venue: In-person at INNO   (2/F, Building 17W, Hong Kong Science Park)
Language: English


Automation is reshaping industries worldwide, yet the unique characteristics of soft materials have posed a hurdle for the garment industry to automate manufacturing. Come and gain insights into the prospects of leveraging AI and robotic technologies for enhanced operations at our upcoming seminar, where eminent scientists will unveil the latest robotic advancement, and engage in thought-provoking conversations with industry leaders from world-leading corporations. Secure your spot now!





Opening Remarks by Prof. Norman TIEN & Group Photo


"Purposive-AI: The Next Frontier" by Prof. Gordon CHENG


"Robotics for Soft Materials" by Prof. Kazuhiro KOSUGE




Panel Discussion on "The Future of AI & Robotics in Garment Production - Opportunities and Challenges"

Remarks: The programme rundown is subject to change without prior notice.


Opening Remarks & Moderator of Panel Discussion

by Prof. Norman TIEN

Managing Director, Centre for Transformative Garment Production
Taikoo Professor of Engineering and Chair Professor of Microsystems Technology,
Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Hong Kong

Speaker biogrpahy

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Prof. Norman TIEN

Professor Norman C. Tien is the Taikoo Professor of Engineering and Chair Professor of Microsystems Technology of the University of Hong Kong (HKU). He is also currently the Head of Innovation Academy of Faculty of Engineering and the Managing Director of the Centre for Transformative Garment Production. He served as the Dean of Engineering from 2012 to 2018, and as the Vice-President and Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Institutional Advancement) (VP(IA)) from 2019 to 2021 at HKU.


Prior to joining HKU, Professor Tien was the Nord Professor of Engineering at Case Western Reserve University, US, where he was the Dean of Engineering from 2007 to 2011. He previously held faculty positions at University of California at Davis, University of California at Berkeley and Cornell University.

Professor Tien received his Ph.D. from the University of California at San Diego, MS from the University of Illinois, and BS from the University of California at Berkeley. His research interests are in the area of micro and nanotechnology, microelectromechanical (MEMS) systems, and robotics.

Topic: Purposive-AI: The Next Frontier

by Prof. Gordon CHENG

Chair Professor for Cognitive Systems, Technical University of Munich


For machines to learn, and especially robots to learn from humans, machines should go beyond learning just the simple action of humans. The Next Frontier in AI I ascribe to is “Purposive-AI”, which should enable machines to learn with purposes. Making use of this new AI will change the way we interact with machines for a Better Future. I will give examples of this in my talk to illustrate the potential power of early applications of Purpose-AI in robot learning.

Speaker biogrpahy

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Gordon Cheng started his first company in Australia in his 20s, GTI Computing specialized in networking and logistics. His successful career expands over more than 25 years in research and industry. He has tremendous experience in leading large-scale projects worldwide. He is a board member of several organizations and has partnered successfully with major international corporations in high-tech projects. As an innovator, he is the co-inventor of some 20 patents in AI (machine learning) and Robotics. He has successfully worked across multiple industrial sectors including, networking, logistics, factory automation, and healthcare just to name a few. He has co-authored more than 400 technical publications. His latest startup focuses on disruptively changing the way robots interact with people and the world.

Prof. Gordon CHENG

Topic: Robotics for Soft Materials

by Prof. Kazuhiro KOSUGE

Chair Professor of Robotic Systems, Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, The University of Hong Kong

Director of JC STEM Lab of Robotics for Soft Materials

Deputy Managing Director of the Centre for Transformative Garment Production

Life-FIEEE, FJSME, FSICE, FRSJ, FJSAE, Member, Engineering Academy of Japan


Global issues such as ageing populations and labour shortages are threatening the future of manufacturing. Robotics, with emerging AI, is expected to solve issues that hinder automation. Today’s robotic technologies are designed to manipulate rigid objects, such as robot hands, end-effectors and tools. However, many labor-intensive manufacturing processes involve the manipulation of soft materials. Labor-intensive garment manufacturing is a typical process that requires the handling of soft materials. This talk will provide an overview of robotics for soft materials and discuss how AI and machine learning technologies can be applied to solve challenging manufacturing problems.

Speaker biogrpahy

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Prof. Kazuhiro KOSUGE

Professor Kazuhiro Kosuge is the Deputy Managing Director of TrasnGP, Director of JC STEM Lab of Robotics for Soft Materials, and a Chair Professor of Robotic Systems at the University of Hong Kong.


He joined Tohoku University and served as a Professor, Department of Machine Intelligence and Systems Engineering from 1995 to 2003, a Professor, Department of Bioengineering and Robotics from 2003 to 2016, and a Professor, Department of Robotics from 2016 to 2021. From 2018 to 2021, he was a Tohoku University Distinguished Professor. For more than 39 years, he has been conducting research on robotics and its applications in the real world. He has published over 390 technical papers. Over 70 of his patents have been transferred to the industry.

He served as 2020 IEEE Vice President for Technical Activities, 2015-2016 IEEE Division X Director, and 2010-2011 President of IEEE Robotics and Automation Society. Honours include the Medal of Honor with purple ribbon in 2018 in the name of the Emperor of Japan, and the 2021 IEEE RAS George Saridis Leadership Award in Robotics and Automation. He is a Life Fellow of IEEE and a member of the Engineering Academy of Japan.

Panel Discussion on The Future of AI & Robotics in Garment Production - Opportunities and Challenges

Mr. Xiaolai LUO

Chief Technology Officer, Tessellation Group

Speaker biogrpahy

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Xiaolai Luo is the CTO of Tessellation Group, which is an innovator and investor specialized in solutions and operations in textiles and apparel assembly, with a strong focus on creating an ecosystem that fosters manufacturing excellence, digital value chains, climate actions and workforce transformation.

Prior to his current position, Xiaolai had 20 years of operational experience as managing director, bringing technology to industrial applications such as de-skilling by automation, quality management, energy efficiency, water saving, product innovation.

Mr. Xiaolai LUO

Panel Discussion on The Future of AI & Robotics in Garment Production - Opportunities and Challenges


General Manager, Industrial Sewing Machine Development Department of Machinery Business Division,

Brother Industries

Speaker biogrpahy

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Mr. Minoru Yamaguchi is an expert in advanced industrial sewing machines, with more than 30 years of extensive experience and in-depth knowledge in the field. Upon graduating from the Department of Electronic and Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Nagoya University in 1990, Mr. Yamaguchi joined Brother Industries Ltd, where he was assigned to the Industrial Sewing Machine Development Department. Throughout his more than three decades of experience in developing innovative sewing machines, he demonstrated profound knowledge and had overseen the electrical and software development for computerized sewing machines. Currently, he serves as the General Manager of the Industrial Sewing Machine Development Department of Machinery Business Division, Brother Industries.


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