George Zarkadakis is currently currently working with one of the biggest international advisory companies on human capital in the world; where he specializes in the digital economy and the impact of machine intelligence on business organization and work. Prior to that, he worked for Accenture and Silicon Graphics Inc., and founded a number of startups; he is currently an investor and advisor to a startup active in AI and machine learning.
George studied control and systems engineering, and has a PhD in Artificial Intelligence from City University, London; which he followed with research in the field of consciousness studies, producing an influential paper where he suggested a cybernetics approach to the problem of consciousness (Noetics). He has taught as a visiting lecturer to a number of universities, and has written a book on the scientific approach to consciousness, which has become part of the curriculum in several Greek Universities. As Research Associate at the Science Communication Group of Imperial College, London, he created and wrote the blog “Turing Dreams“, dedicated to AI and the 100th anniversary since the birth of English mathematician Alan Turing; one of the most visited sites on AI according to Networked Blogs.
As an activist in the politics of science and technology, he has worked on several technology-related areas and projects for the European Commission, and was a candidate MEP for the European Federalist Party. He has organized numerous Cafes Scientifiques and public debates on science and technology across Europe, and was a key participant in Meeting of Minds, a ground-breaking pan-European project where citizens from nine countries discussed and debated with scientists and policy-makers the future of neurotechnologies. He has also worked as External Relations Officer of the European Bioinformatics Institute in Cambridge, where he designed the communication strategy for funding investment in the next generation of pan-European bioinformatics infrastructure. For his international work in science communication he was awarded a knighthood by the French government.
As a science editor and journalist he launched and directed the biggest popular science magazine in SE Europe, and wrote and co-presented Eureka! the most popular science television program in Greece. He collaborated with the British Council in internationalizing Famelab, a talent competition for young science communicators. He has appeared as a guest on History Channel (in the Emmy-awarded series Engineering an Empire and in Clash of the Gods), and is a guest speaker in a new documentary on Artificial Intelligence and the future of humans, directed by Tommy Pellota (director of the sci-fi film A Scanner Darkly with Keanu Reeves). George has written extensively on science and technology for many media outlets, including Aeon magazine, the Telegraph, and Wired.
As an author, he has written several novels that have been published in Greece, Italy and Spain; three plays; as well as the 2015 non-fiction book In Our Own Image: the history and future of Artificial Intelligence (Rider Books – UK, Pegasus Books – USA, Nikkei Business Publications, China Citic Press, Korea Real Bookers), which was described by Publishers Weekly as “…the most comprehensive history of AI for our digital age”.