On May 18 & 19 at UCCA, China’s leading contemporary art museum, WISE gathers a group of chinese and international thinkers, artists and professionals across different industries (music, film, entertainment, business, media, science, and technology) to give you the toolkit to wise up. Keep yourself posted with the latest updates and information about the program also via our social media channels.



UCCA Auditorium



Deep Fakes: Good, Bad, and Ugly Humans

Time: 10:30-10:50

Speaker: Christian Grewell (Professor at NYU Shanghai)

Technologies such as machine learning, raytracing, and computer vision are rapidly blurring the line between real and fake, making it possible to digitally construct humans in media unable to be distinguished by their flesh-and-blood analogs.

For this talk, NYU Shanghai Interactive Media Arts and Business Professor Christian Grewell will introduce the audience to the good, the bad, and the ugly in the world of digital humans, with special attention paid to the technologies behind this transformative form of new media.


Empathy from the Machine - Is AI the Better Human?

Time: 10:55-11:40


Dr. Alan Ip (Principle Program Manager, Microsoft Cloud and AI)

Biman Najika Liyanage (Researcher)

Wei Sun (Founder of Humanity+ China, A.I. Research Consultant at KurzweilAI (CN))

Kshitij KP (Senior Product and Marketing Manager for NetEase Youdao)


Elliott Zaagman (Executive Coach, Writer for Huxiu and Technode)

With the ever-rising sophistication of technologies such as speech or facial recognition, the question is if AI might soon read our emotions better than we do ourselves. But if the algorithms know us better than our closest friends, what kind of impact will this have on us? Will we just become slaves to the algorithms and the industries that control them? Or will it finally lead to self-improvement and prevent us from making bad decisions?


Unexpected Effects of the Digital Revolution: From Neolithic to Neopsefic Age

Time: 11:45-12:00

Speaker: Jean-Dominique Séval (Founder of Soon Consulting)

The “Closing parentheses” is a concept that Jean-Dominique Séval uses to describe the ways in which the digital revolution is bringing us back to ancestral behaviors and organizational structures. He believes that the return to an oral culture is about to close a centuries-long parenthesis on the written word. The most obvious of these effects is this return to an oral culture, but also to à la carte teaching, and its figurehead: the tutor, the private instructor. It is also the advent of a new brand of piecework and, as a corollary, the end of permanent employment contracts and salaried jobs, along with the erasure of the once clear division between our working and private lives. This is the promise of hyper-customized goods and services, a private life that is exposed for all to see, as on the village square, a time of direct democracy not unlike the Assemblies in the agora of Ancient age where musicians come back on stage to earn their living. Actually, it could be our civilization in the not too distant future, 30 to 50 years from now.


Future Female Sounds: Diversity in Music

Time: 13:00-13:20

Speaker: Tia Korpe (Founder and Managing Director of Future Female Sounds)

Hailing from Denmark via the Middle East all the way to China, Tia Korpe will give a speech about her work with Future Female Sounds, and how she is empowering women through music.


The Musical Silk Road I – The Future of Streaming

Time: 13:25-14:25


Detlef Schwarte (Co-founder of the Reeperbahn Festival)

Marit Posch (Label Manager for Monkeytown)

Gareth Davies (Head of International for Kontor Records)

Zou Xiaoma (Vice President and Copyright Director for KANJIAN)

Jeff Chia Minshu (Co-founder of StreetVoice and Simple Life Festival)

Simon Wheeler (Director of Digital and New Business for Beggars Group)


Carsten Winter, Professor, Hanover University of Music (DE)

From a European’s point of view, China seems to be a music country of unlimited possibilities. Compared to five years ago, copyright protection has improved, awareness of the value of music is changing, and in streaming the trend is moving cautiously towards the paid model. It’s no wonder then that the major Chinese music platforms are becoming global players, and the dominant market players of the old world are investing heavily in the Chinese market. The cross-participation of Tencent Music and Spotify is a prime example of this. But what role can small and medium-sized music companies and their artists play? What networks are needed between China and Europe to ensure that the future of streaming allows for cultural exchange between the two markets?


Empire Business vs. Cultural Diversity: The Future of the Global Concert Business

Time: 14:30-15:00

Speaker: Berthold Seliger (Owner and Founder of Seliger Concert Agency)

Today’s music industry is an unabashed monopoly. Be it touring business, festivals, artist’s agents, ticketing companies – all parts of the business are controlled by only very few companies, who operate all over the world, including Europe, the US, and China. Outside investment has recently flooded into live music, with investment funds controlling more and more concert companies and festivals. These oligopolies create a typical curse of bigness. It’s not about music anymore, and instead ticketing, sponsorship, and big data. Stricter antitrust legislation and enhanced consumer protection is desperately needed. Even more important is the development and protection of independent cultural centers in order to prevent the creation of a monoculture, and preserve the cultural diversity to which pop culture has contributed to from the start.


Galleries Are For Snobs – Democratizing Art Consumption In China

Time: 15:25-15:55

Speaker: Eric Reithler-Barros (CEO of Fold Group)

Systems that seem anachronistic sometimes beg to be updated, and sometimes it's a wonder that they still haven’t been. Whether you are a passive observer or a serious collector, to some degree your eyeballs consume artwork every day. So when it becomes time for you to consume art a little more actively, why is the gallery system so daunting, intimidating, and inefficient? Do our attention-deficit lives seek to coexist with our artwork in the long term? And in the sharing economy, is owning artwork even an important part of the experience anymore? In this segment, NYC-to-Shanghai media evangelist and entrepreneur Eric Reithler-Barros examines why China might just be the ideal petri dish for a radical reexamination and streamlining of why and how we consume artwork every day.


Paint with Your Brain: Artistic Exploration of Brain-Machine Interfaces

Time: 16:00-16:20

Speaker: Grace Ng (Neuro-Artist, Entrepreneur, A.I. Investor)

Ever dream of telepathy? When your friend or computer reads your mind and just knows what you want to do next without you having to say it? Grace Ng has been creating art at the intersection of neuroscience and technology to explore a world in which our minds directly communicate with machines. It’s not too far off, but what does this mean for our future, both as creators and as a society? Learn about the latest advancements in brain-machine interfaces, Grace’s artistic approach to elevate societal consciousness and bring neuroscience to more people, and how you can get involved with her projects.


Being One with the Machine: A New Way to Perform Electronic Music

Time: 16:25-16:55

Speaker: Chagall (Artist, Innovator)

Fiddling with knobs and twiddling on controllers: Let’s face it - seeing electronic musicians on stage behind their gear is hardly visually exciting. On the other hand, big EDM Festivals has brought us megastar DJs having their hands high in the air instead of on the DJ decks, concentrating on the performative element of their show rather than actually playing “live”. Chagall found a third way, using new technologies to turn her body into a musical instrument. Will this be a game-changer for generations of electronic musicians to come?


Room 2


"88 Minutes of Matchmaking"

Time: 15:15-16:45

A Matchmaking session as part of the exchange program with the Reeperbahn Festival, bringing 20 additional European delegates at the crossroads of music and technology are able to participate and to meet at WISE. (by application only)



UCCA Auditorium



Becoming Artificially Intelligent: A Change for the Music Industry!?

Time: 10:45-11:00

Speaker: Hazel Savage (CEO and Co-founder of Musiio)

For quite some time now AI has changed the user experience on streaming platforms, with algorithms curating new music for us, and creating completely personalized experiences. But what else does AI have in store for the musician and the music industry? Will AI ultimately replace the composer, or become yet another tool to create music? Maybe AI will help to discover new talent and become the next A&R? What else do we have to be aware of? Hazel will give us an overview about the status quo as well as where we might go in the future.


Chinese Culture Going Global: The Success Stories and the Pitfalls

Time: 11:05-11:50


Emily Xueni (Translator Science Fiction)

Tom Simpson (Senior Director of China-Britain Business Council)

George van Wetering (Founder, GAGgroup)


Sha Hua (Correspondent for Handelsblatt)

Compared with its neighbor South Korea, China has not had quite the same success with cultural exports just yet. There is no Chinese equivalent to K-Pop. Chinese movies, despite being massive box office hits in the mainland, are rarely exported to the West, and international experts are not quite raging about Chinese design. However, there have been success stories as well: the rapid internationalization of short video app TikTok, showing that Chinese companies can adapt themselves to local markets, more and more Chinese musicians tour abroad, Chinese sci-fi is en vogue, and at least some international media outlets report a new wave of China cool. In this panel we will analyze the reasons behind the success stories and the failures of Chinese cultural exports, and make predictions about its future.


Culture in Business: Why it Matters

Time: 11:55-12:05

Speaker: Erhan Enginzli (CEO of Multigence Technology)

As they say: "People make culture - culture makes success." No matter if you are leading a company, or if you are on the bottom of the corporate food chain: The culture in your company matters. But while competencies and qualifications can be acquired, culture is inherent to people and therefore difficult to grasp. So how can we measure a person's cultural disposition, make it presentable, and thus determine whether this person fits in with the corporate culture?


Fashion Gamification

Time: 12:10-12:30

Speaker: David Liu (Founder of Koikreative)

Gamification is a revolutionary concept brought up based on user experience. It introduced the powerful in-game mechanism of constantly escalating people’s desire by rewarding them, transforming user experience, while also gaining their loyalty. Adopting this model, fashion gamification is a new experiment that attempts to combine both fashion and gaming in order to change the way we interact with fashion.


The Musical Silk Road II– The Hidden Opportunities

Time: 13:30-14:30


Zhang Fengyan (Associate Professor at Communication University of China)

Steve Mayall (CEO of Music Ally)

Steinunn Arnadottir (Director of Engineering for Native Instruments)

Tony Li (Co-Founder of ACRCloud)

Zhang Youdai (Independent Music Promoter and Radiohost)

Sun Shiliang (COO of Nielsen CCData)


Carsten Winter (Professor at Hanover University of Music)

The streaming business is currently the shining façade of the music industry due to its glaring growth. But innovations and perspectives usually emerge off the beaten track. Projects between artists from different cultural areas, technology, knowledge-driven companies, and cross-sectoral, network-based developments provide the creative input for the music business of tomorrow and the day after tomorrow. The creative tension between China and Europe has enormous potential for new ideas, products, and business models. Let us convince ourselves that the hidden possibilities are more obvious than we think.


Of DJs, Bands and Rappers: Trends in China’s Club and Live Music Industry

Time: 14:35-15:15


Fay Haixuan Wang (Vice-President of Isy)

Paul Neuteboom (Managing Director of Brotherhood Music)

Isla Angus (Agent for ATC Live)

Chang Liu (COO of Pillz Records)


Philipp Grefer (Founder of WISE, Co-Founder FakeMusicMedia)

China’s club and live music industry is booming. For many international agents, China already constitutes the third biggest market after Europe and the US. However there are a number of challenges for local promoters, from red tape, to a fractured media landscape, and difficult-to-predict consumer behavior. In this panel we will look at the trends, challenges, and opportunities in China´s fast changing market.


Marketing Culture: How to be Heard in China

Time: 15:20-16:00


John Stratton (CEO of FutureONE Entertainment)

Zhu Jie (Head of Music Operations, Douyin and Huoshan)

Zeng Yu (Founder of Pilot Music) tbc

Hu Xiaowei (COO for Billboard China)

Zhang Long (Deputy General Manager of Hit FM)

Donald Hau (CEO of Mixmag China)


Stephen Dowler (Brand Manager Asia Pacific for Monstercat)

There are 1.4 billion people in China. About half of them are connected to the Internet. But which part of the population is actually interested in what you have to offer, and how do you reach them? In this panel we will examine the (social) media landscape in the Middle Kingdom and how data, Key Opinion Leaders, and other tools can be used to reach your audience.



For its second edition WISE gathers 40+ speakers from 10+ countries to inspire over 2 days.

Click here for all speakers and complete information.


Book your tickets via the link below: