Prof Hafiz Alaka
“AI can improve efficiency, effectiveness and safety across many sectors including banking, construction, and agriculture. People are ready for these solutions.”
Professor Hafiz Alaka is the founding Director of the Big Data Technologies and Innovation laboratory (for construction and infrastructure). He also leads the ‘Prediction of Climate and its Impacts' group in the Centre for Climate Change Research.
His focus area is the application of technologies like big data and artificial intelligence/machine learning, to construction, infrastructure, business/finance, and agriculture, among other sectors.
Current projects for Hafiz include the development of an app which allows the public to find out the predicted air quality of somewhere they're going at a very local level – this is particularly helpful for vulnerable people with asthma and other respiratory conditions as well as older people. He is also involved in a project that is using machine learning to assess the fire safety of a building at the design stage – to prevent disasters such as Grenfell.
He is engaged in other projects that benefit the construction industry including helping developers use a new method of building that is much safer and faster than normal construction methods, but requires expensive training. Hafiz and the team have developed a plugin that helps overcome the training problem and makes it easier for developers to design with this new method in mind, saving time and money.