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Mária Virčíková is a technology innovator, researcher and entrepreneur who is passionate about artificial intelligence and virtual reality. She is the co-founder and CEO of MATSUKO, a deep tech company that uses AI to convert 2D into volumetric video for real-time holographic communication. She is also a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum. Maria holds a PhD in AI from the Technical University of Košice, where she focused on empowering social robots with learning capabilities using AI. She has taught courses on AI and human-robot interaction at various universities and institutions worldwide and has published over 30 papers in prestigious AI conferences and journals. She is driven by the vision of using AI to benefit society and enhance human capabilities.

Mária will be taking part in panel discussion Knowledge economy in the context of Eastern Slovakia.



Juraj Girman acts as the Chairman of the Board of Košice IT Valley and Chairman of the Board of Carpathian Foundation. Thanks to his expertise and enthusiasm he is one of the respected personalities of the region. Juraj is a representative of globally operating company Deutsche Telekom IT Solutions Slovakia with a strong understanding of the needs of the region and the country. He brings world-class expertise from the area of innovations, applied research and technology transfer.

Juraj will be a guest of panel discussion How do technology and AI affect society?


In U. S. Steel Košice Juraj Sabol deals with themes of decarbonisation and expansion of digital technologies and AI in the steel industry, with the aim of increasing the sustainability of steel production in Košice. Before his return to Košice he worked in consulting company McKinsey & Company where he dealt with development of strategies and transformations in industry, power engineering, as well as in telecommunications, banking and e-commerce.


Juraj will be the moderator of panel discussion How do technology and AI affect society?



Peter Kolesár is a Partner at CIVITTA, an R&D advisory and innovation hub headquartered in Estonia helping startups and corporates in CEE innovate and grow. He is Panel Member for the ERC Proof of Concept grant scheme and a Member of the Board of tech and business associations (American Chamber of Commerce and Košice IT Valley), entrepreneurship school (C.S. Lewis Lýceum) and an NGO focused on social innovation in ending homelessness (DEDO Foundation). He previously served as a Slovak Trade and Innovation Counselor at Slovak embassies in Tel Aviv and Washington, D.C. Peter holds Master degrees from the Central European University in Budapest and from Masaryk University in Brno. He was a scholar at Bard College, New York.

Peter will be moderating the second panel discussion Knowledge economy in the context of Eastern Slovakia.



Miriam Lexmann (KDH/EĽS) is a Member of European Parliament. Among her priorities are defence of freedom, democracy and human dignity in Slovakia, European Union and the world. 

She is a member of the EP Committee on Foreign Affairs, the Subcommittee on Security and Defence and the Committee on Employment and Social Affairs. She is also a member of the Delegation for relations with Belarus and of the Delegation to the Euronest Parliamentary Assembly for cooperation with the Eastern Partnership countries. She is one of the founding members and co-chair of the Inter-Parliamentary Alliance on China (IPAC), as well as of the Hong Kong Informal Group for the Protection of Freedom and the United For Ukraine Working Group. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Tuneg, Puchik and Tesar Foundation and a member of the Board of the Forum for Life.

She is focusing intensively on the safety of children and youth on the Internet and also new technologies with emphasis on AI where she ensures that a human being and their welfare is always at the centre. She tries to improve the status of carers and better care for the elderly as well as socially or medically disadvantaged. 

Before her election to the European Parliament she worked in the field of democracy promotion as Director of the European Office of the International Republican Institute. Prior to that she served in diplomacy as Permanent Representative of the National Council of Slovak Republic to the EU as well as in other advisory roles within the European Parliament and the Council of Europe.

Miriam will be a guest of panel discussion How do technology and AI affect society?




Michal has worked in the field of artificial intelligence and machine learning for some time, focusing especially on artificial neural networks and deep learning, on reinforcement learning, and more recently on multi-modal learning and learning that involves language supervision. He also has experience in other areas of AI such as metaheuristic optimization methods, representation of uncertain knowledge, probabilistic models and more.

He has participated in a number of national and international projects as a researcher and has led several projects as a coordinator / principal investigator. He has been on exchanges and secondments to several research institutions internationally, including e.g. UC Berkeley, the University of Patras, Tongji University in Shanghai and others. In 2019 he founded the Laboratory of Artificial Intelligence of the University of Žilina (LUIZA). He has served as a reviewer for international journals and conferences and participated in their boards. He is a member of the executive board of AI4SK and an honorary member of Slovakia’s National Centre of Robotics.



Róbert Vandlík is an expert in the field of implementing artificial intelligence in manufacturing and non-manufacturing processes. Currently, he serves as the head of the digital team at U. S. Steel Košice. His passion for AI technologies and their practical application in the industry constantly motivates him to bring innovations and improvements to this field. Prior to his current engagement at USSK, he gained extensive experience as a Lean Six Sigma coach and in leading project management teams.

Róbert will be participing in Cloud & DevOps: AI projects from Eastern Slovakia. 

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Vojtech Riník is a software engineer and entrepreneur with a passion for productivity applications. He is the co-founder of Reflect Notes, a note-taking tool designed to mirror the way the human brain works. Prior to his work at Reflect, he spent a few years at a fintech data startup based in New York City and also founded several iOS and macOS apps. His vision of using AI to streamline note management and widen human thinking is at the heart of Reflect Notes' work.


Vojtech will participate in panel discussion Knowledge economy in the context of Eastern Slovakia.


Martina Szabóová works as an assistant professor at Department of Cybernetics and Artificial Intelligence at Technical University of Košice. Her research focuses on identification of human emotions and creation of methods which would enable robots to interpret and respond to these emotions more effectively. By combining machine learning, natural language processing and computer vision she hopes to improve the way we interact with machines in everyday life. Current shift in chatbots may also bring improvement in this area. In addition to this, she works on other projects as the identification of artifacts in USG images of lungs (which should help doctors with the diagnosis) or support of foreign language learning by means of a robot.

Martina will be a guest in panel discussion How do technology and AI affect society?



Seasoned developer with 15+ years of expertise in .NET, C#, and frontend languages. As a dedicated leader of software engineers, he still finds immense joy in coding. Actively participating in developer community events and hackathons, he thrives on innovation and collaboration.

What fuels his passion? Transforming development methodologies to deliver cutting-edge applications with modern architecture and captivating design, all while utilizing fast and reliable delivery models.

Michal will be participating in Cloud & DevOps: AI projects from Eastern Slovakia. 



Jozef managed to start multiple legal tech start-ups during his studies at Cambridge University, for which he received a Forbes 30 under 30 award. Venturing from the legal tech space into software development, Jozef co-founded Sudolabs and is currently leading business strategy and sales departments.

Jozef will participate in panel discussion Knowledge economy in the context of Eastern Slovakia. 

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