Formal Bio

Dr. Ashwin Ram is Technical Director of AI in the Office of the CTO for Google Cloud. He focuses on bringing Google Cloud AI to the world through deep personalized engagement with the leadership of top companies to reimagine their businesses by leveraging the power of AI. He also works with Google AI teams to drive new technologies and capabilities that address customer needs.

Ashwin is a distinguished AI researcher, technologist, and entrepreneur. Prior to Google, Ashwin was Senior Manager for AI Science for Alexa, the intelligent agent that powers Amazon Echo and other devices. He led cross-functional R&D initiatives to create advanced Conversational AI technologies for intelligent agents, including the university-facing Alexa Prize competition.

Prior to Amazon, Dr. Ram was Area Manager & Chief Innovation Officer of Interactive Intelligence at Xerox PARC, where he led a team to invent new technologies that make people smarter, particularly in consumer health and wellness. Before that, Dr. Ram was an Associate Professor in the School of Interactive Computing in the College of Computing of the Georgia Institute of Technology and Director of Georgia Tech’s Cognitive Computing Lab. He has also been an Associate Professor of Cognitive Science, an Adjunct Professor in the School of Psychology, and an Adjunct Professor in Department of Math & Computer Science at Emory University.

Dr. Ram received his B.Tech. in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi. He was the valedictorian of his class and received the President of India’s Gold Medal for best undergraduate performance. He received his M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and his Ph.D. degree from Yale University for his dissertation on “Question-Driven Understanding: An Integrated Theory of Story Understanding, Memory, and Learning”. He has published 3 books and over 100 scientific articles in international forums.

Dr. Ram has a proven track record in driving research to successful commercialization. A serial entrepreneur, he specializes in technology innovation and business strategy. He has co-founded four startups: Inquus (OpenStudy), an online social learning network for students and faculty; Enkia (acquired by Sentiment360), which developed AI software for social media applications; Cobot Health, a social network for healthcare; and Ardext, which provided software for testing electronic components and systems.

Dr. Ram is a closet anthropologist and loves travel, people and culture.

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