Former head of Google Campus London appointed NED at Mind Foundry

Mind Foundry, the Oxford university spinout focusing on the high-stakes applications of AI, has strengthened its board with the appointment of the former Head of Google Campus London, now a serial angel investor and renowned advocate for the responsible development and deployment of technology, Sarah Drinkwater, as its non-executive director.

Drinkwater brings with her 15 years of experience within the technology and investment ecosystem in both Europe and Silicon Valley. Over five years as head of Google Campus in London, Drinkwater supported the creation of more than 4,200 jobs, and fundraising of more than £195m, by startups in the Campus community.

This was followed by three years at the philanthropic investment firm Omidyar Network, where Drinkwater led a team investing in co-creation tools and solutions, and businesses contributing to the responsible technology movement.

Commenting on her appointment, Drinkwater said: “AI quite rightly comes in for considerable scrutiny – driven both by the backlash against negative outcomes of irresponsible applications of AI as well as the general public’s perception of a rising threat from robots and automation. Fortunately, the narrative is shifting. Having spent the majority of my career discussing how principles of ethical behaviour apply to the development and use of technology, I wanted to focus on how we operationalise those principles from the ground up and build better tech that makes a positive impact in the world at scale.

“This is exactly where Mind Foundry is leading the way. I’m delighted to be joining a smart and values-led team, and look forward to supporting Mind Foundry in its mission to develop AI that tackles the world’s most important problems so that everyone – regardless of their technical ability – can understand its outcomes and implications.”

Brian Mullins, CEO of Mind Foundry said: “AI has huge potential when it comes to solving high-stakes problems both for individuals and at population-scale. But it’s not perfect. To date, AI has been marketed as a technology that is beyond human understanding, and this is simply not true. Sarah’s passion for ‘demystifying’ technology, her desire to upskill everyone that interacts with AI,  from those building the technology to those impacted by it, and her personal drivers resonated with everything that Mind Foundry stands for. We are thrilled to have Sarah on board, and her experience, perspectives, and network will be invaluable as Mind Foundry continues to scale.”