Conservation AI is a unique interdisciplinary project with researchers from computer science, astrophysics, and conservation biology. By harnessing the knowledge from these varying fields we aim to develop a platform and associated hardware that will bring benefits to the conservation community.

Paul Fergus
Lead Researcher (Machine Learning)

Professor Paul Fergus is a Professor in Machine Learning. Professor Fergus’s main research interests include machine learning for detecting and predicting preterm births. He is also interested in the detection of foetal hypoxia, electroencephalogram seizure classification and bioinformatics (polygenetic obesity, Type II diabetes and multiple sclerosis). Professor Fergus has a keen interest in conservation and is currently looking at the use of machine learning to solve different conservation-related problems. He has competitively won external grants to support his research from HEFCE, Royal Academy of Engineering, Innovate UK, Knowledge Transfer Partnership, North West Regional Innovation Fund and Bupa and has published over 200 peer-reviewed papers in these areas. Before his academic career Dr Fergus was a senior software engineer in industry for six years developing bespoke solutions for a number of large organisations.

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Carl Chalmers
Lead Researcher (Machine Learning)

Dr Carl Chalmers is a Senior Lecturer in Machine Learning and Applied Artificial Intelligence in the Department of Computer Science at Liverpool John Moores University. Dr Chalmers’s main research interests includes machine learning, computer vision, high performance computing and data visualisation. In addition, he is also working in the area of high-performance computing and cloud computing to support and improve existing machine learning approaches, while facilitating application integration. He is currently applying is knowledge and expertise of large-scale machine learning deployments to solve some of the pressing issues faced by conservation organisations. He has won multiple grant awards and has seen international recognition for his research in the area of machine learning. He currently leads a group of machine learning practitioners which includes academics, Post docs, PhD students and industry partners. Before his academic career Dr Chalmers spent over 8 years in industry developing a wide variety of different applications.

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Serge Wich
Lead Researcher (Conservation)

Serge Wich is a professor at Liverpool John Moores University who has almost three decades of experience in animal behaviour, ecology, and conservation. Since 2011 he has been using drones to support conservation work and he is a co-founder of conservationdrones.org. Serge has a keen interest in using technology for conservation.

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Steven Longmore
Lead Researcher (Astro)

Steve Longmore is a professor in the Astrophysics Research Institute, whose research aims to understand how the Universe evolves over cosmic time to produce the spectacular variety of stars, planets and life we see today. He has a keen interest in applying astrophysics techniques to tackle problems closer to home, such as conservation of endangered species, search and rescue, or tackling peat fires that are a major contributor to climate change.

Noami Davies
Researcher (Ecology and AI)

Naomi Davies is the Research and Conservation Officer at Knowsley Safari. Naomi conducted her master’s degree in Wildlife Conservation and Drone Technology through Liverpool John Moores University and has since been involved in a wide range of conservation research predominantly in the UK and South East Asia to benefit both captive and wild populations. The Conservation AI team have been working with Naomi to monitor the accessible and diverse range of animals available at Knowsley Safari.

Ross Verrall
AI Technical Consultant
I’m the NVIDIA EMEA Services Lead for Artificial Intelligence and Enterprise Solutions. I enjoy challenging myself and like to tackle the most difficult of problems head on, as a result I find I’m always learning and take the most satisfaction when being successful in overcoming major obstacles and delivering tangible results and value – whatever form that may take. I’m positive, passionate and energetic and strongly believe in community and am keen to have a positive impact on the world.
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Kaleb Smith
Senior Data Scientist
I’m a Senior Data Scientist on NVIDIA’s Higher Education and Research team across North and Latin America. I have experience in both novel AI research as well as industry applications spanning from generative modeling of different data modalities to computer vision and signal processing on embedded platforms. I have a strong passion for animals, stretching back to my younger days begging to stay awake past bedtime so I could watch Discovery Channel’s “Wild Discovery”. Looking back, I was probably too young for the graphic nature of the show, but I did love seeing all the world’s beautiful creatures. I hope to use my skill set, optimism, and love for animals to help in the conservation effort of our world’s declining ecosystem. If I could wake up knowing my work saved a single endangered species or helped spread awareness to declining numbers I would consider that the best kind of work.
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Ekaterina Sirazitdinova
Research Engineer
I am a research engineer focusing on computer vision and deep learning. During my PhD studies, I was mainly working on the tasks of image-based 3D reconstruction and tracking, and afterwards spent some time doing research in deep learning for medical image analysis. I work as a data scientist at NVIDIA now, helping customers to solve their computer vision and video analytics problems. I also specialize in machine learning inference optimization and deployment of AI models on data center GPUs as well as in embedded / edge devices.
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