2018 Theme: Diversity + Mindest

This event occurred on April 28, 2018
10:00am – 6:30pm BST
Birmingham, United Kingdom

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDxAstonUniversity returned with the theme ”Diversity + Mindset”. The event was held at the Aston University Engineering Academy and featured talks on Artificial Intelligence, the challenges with modern day feminism, why diversity is king and more. Throughout the day we run fun activities such as henna tattoos and having your name translated into Korean.


Ajay Rose

Ajay Rose is the founder and editor of Plugsville, a media platform that documents culture in a way that never cuts corners, and freelance writer for Complex and Link Up TV. He is also a screenplay writer, and in this talk, he explains how to solve the problem of not having the experience to do the things you really want to do.

Hayden Taylor

Hayden, now 21, is now focusing on his own business, Unloc, which provides programmes to 100 schools and colleges that helps young people make a difference through setting up a business or improving their community.

Jeremy Walker

Jeremy Walker is an entrepreneur and software developer who specialises in building businesses that utilise artificial intelligence in the advancement of medicine and education. He is the CEO of Thalamus and CTO for a number of businesses that he co-owns including Reachora, Exercism, and Kaido. He previously co-founded Meducation, a medical education platform used by 15% of medical students worldwide. Jeremy has a degree in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Birmingham, is a respected Ruby developer and contributes to various open source projects. In his spare time he climbs, reads and thinks. He is driven by making the world fairer for everyone and passionate about creating amazing places to work.”

Jess Butcher

Entrepreneur, Non-Exec Director and Angel investor. Co-Founder of Blippar, one of Britain’s best-funded technology scale-ups and one of the world’s leading computer vision and augmented reality technology platforms. She is the recipient of numerous female entrepreneur and tech awards including BBC’s Top 100 Women and Fortune’s Most Powerful female entrepreneurs and is a passionate start-up mentor, public speaker and writer on subjects as diverse as women in technology, female entrepreneurialism, digital innovation, digital detox and work-life balance. She received an MBE in the 2018 New Years Honours List for her services to technology and entrepreneurship.

Josh Cook

I have supported children with special educational needs and disabilities in both primary and secondary environments. After witnessing first-hand the challenges that many children with ADHD face in education, I felt that we could do more to help. I believe that some of the current practices in schools are actually undermining our efforts to support these children. We need to move away from a over-reliance on praise and punishment. Through a mindset of curiosity and flexibility we can support young people with ADHD to develop the skills and resilience to meet the challenges of everyday life.

Munir Al Akari

Munir Al Akari works in international policy, focusing on state-building in post-conflict societies. During his work in the Middle East region, Munir founded a platform for young people in post-conflict societies to foster their leadership skills through access to knowledge, skills and practice. Munir also worked with several UN and EU agencies, providing strategic advice on foreign policy challenges in the Middle East and North Africa. Munir also worked with private sector consulting firms, contributing to risk management consultations for Fortune 100 corporations on economic and geopolitical developments in the Middle East.

Nick Speakman

Nick is the Founder & Head of SPORF. A sports digital sports publishing brand with over 15 million fans. From creation in his University bedroom in 2012, to being today’s highest-followed digital sports publishing brand in the UK. Nick’s determination and creative mindset has allowed him to transform a hobby into an award-winning digital brand. His unique approach has been recognised industry-wide, having recently been inducted into the Sports Industry NextGen Leaders Class of 2018. Nick is on a journey to re-define the sports publishing space by ‘doing things differently’.

PJ Ellis

PJ co-founded the charity LoveBrum in 2014, which shines a light on the “hidden gem” projects of Birmingham and has funded over 50 local schemes so far. It now has over 2,500 individual members and over 100 corporate supporters and patrons. It recently received £250,000 funding from the National Lottery to build its infrastructure. PJ has helped raise over £750,000 for local charities and projects in the last 5 years and often mentors students and start-up businesses, helping 10 of the latter raise over £1 million in funding.