Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab in association with National Law University, Delhi; Himachal Pradesh National Law University, Shimla; National Law University, Bhopal; Maharashtra National Law University, Nagpur; Dharamshastra National Law University, Jabalpur and Association of Law Libraries organised a three-day (06-08 Sept. 2019)International Conference on Digital Transformation: A Cognitive Learning Towards Artificial Intelligence. Prof. Ranbir Singh, Vice-Chancellor, NLU, Delhi; Prof. Vijayakumar, Vice-Chancellor, NLIU, Bhopal; Dr. Francisco Marmolejo, Education Specialist, The World Bank; Prof. Nishtha Jaswal, Vice-Chancellor, HPNLU, Shimla; Dr. Priya Rai NLUD Conference Director; Dr. Akash Singh, Assistant Librarian NLU, Delhi; Prof. (Dr.) Paramjit S. Jaswal, Vice-Chancellor, RGNUL and Prof. Naresh Kumar Vats, Registrar, RGNUL graced the inaugural Session of the conference. Prof. (Dr.) Paramjit S. Jaswal, Vice-Chancellor, RGNUL welcomed the guests and delegates on the occasion. He elaborated upon the role of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in societal development. He also spoke about the significance of digital transformation in academia. Alluding to the growth of Artificial Intelligence (AI),he said, “Artificial Intelligence can perform specific functions based on data but lacks critical thinking abilities.” While enlisting the harms of Artificial Intelligence, Prof. Jaswal pointed out the need to question the ethical code of Artificial Intelligence. Expensive technological equipments, addiction to smart devices and marring of human creativity were the major problems posed in the digital times,he remarked. “Artificial Intelligence cannot substitute human intelligence,” he cited.
Dr. Vijayakumar, Vice-Chancellor, NLIU, Bhopal apprised the delegates with the aims and objectives of the conference. He also talked about the 1st ICDT 2018 hosted by NLU, Delhi 23 States and UTs of India were participating in the 2nd edition of the conference being hosted by RGNUL. “Artificial Intelligence is an ever resonating world in everyday life,” he said. He elaborated that the conference would address the issues of digital distraction, data security and privacy, exposure to tools and techniques in digital transformation, innovative practices and concepts in libraries, transformational ideas, emerging technologies, leadership development and training opportunities to support the ongoing transformation. “100 Research Papers would be presented in six main and eighteen parallel sessions,” he informed the gathering. “Experts from India and abroad would chair the different technical sessions,” he further added.Prof. Ranbir Singh, Vice-Chancellor, NLU, Delhi talked about digital libraries, emotional intelligence,driverless cars, Alexa, the sustainable practices and use of Artificial Intelligence in academia. He raised a concern regarding the threat of Artificial Intelligence to diverse professions with a special mention to the book titled,The Death of a Lawyer. Prof. Singh cited “We are approaching 21st century with 19th century governance and 20th century systems.” He advised professionals and students to be “future ready” in the digital times.
Dr. Francisco Marmolejo in his inaugural address referred to the present times as “age of disruption”. He focused on the challenges to higher education in the age of digital transformation. “India,” he observed, “is the second largest system of higher education. In the changing times the digital natives would have to adapt themselves.” Mr. Marmolejo deliberated upon the need to prepare the students for the times to come. “This is a transitional phase of transformation where students suffer from syndrome of partial attention and teachers are digital migrants. One cannot push the students to memorize information in such times,” he said.He emphasized on the importance of teaching students and professionals way to utilize information and to analyse it. There was a dire need to develop the cognitive and non-cognitive skills of the students, he added. IPR, ethical dimensions and cyber security were the emerging issues in the age of digital transformation. He said that Artificial Intelligence challenged traditional assumptions.Concluding his address, he cited “Future is no longer what it used to be”. Dr. Nishtha Jaswal, Vice-Chancellor, HPNLU, Shimla spoke about the enhancement of teaching-learning techniques with Artificial Intelligence. She reminded the delegates of the Guru – Shishya system, power of the pen and supremacy of human intelligence. “Our intelligence is what makes us human and artificial intelligence is an extension of it,” she cited. Dr. Nishtha said that Artificial Intelligence could innovate teaching pedagogies and MOOCs could play pivotal role in imparting education. “In an age when everyone relies upon Artificial Intelligence, uses social media and education is no longer the prerogative of a few, psychological theories on intelligence must evolve,” she remarked. She exhorted the gathering to use Artificial Intelligence prudently for the betterment of society.Conference Book titled Transcending Technology: A Cognitive Learning Towards Artificial Intelligence was released during the function. Mr. Vinay Ahuja, Head, Mohan Law House, was also felicitated by Prof. Jaswal and Prof. Naresh Kumar Vats.Prof. Naresh Kumar Vats, Registrar, extended a vote of thanks. He acknowledged the contribution of sponsors for the Conference. He also thanked Dr. Harjinder Kaur, Dr. Jaspal Kaur, Dr. Arjun, Mr. Gurjant Singh, Mrs. Harkiran Kaur and Mr. Joginder Singh for their efforts in organising the event.