International conference on AI in Work, Innovation, Productivity and Skills


Sophie Thompson




Sophie started her career by graduating with a First Class degree in Theology and a Distinction in MSc International Business. While studying for her Masters in 2016, Sophie co-founded VirtualSpeech and created the world’s first virtual reality (VR) public speaking application to overcome her own fear of public speaking. Since then, she has developed the first soft skills education platform to combine e-learning with practice and training in VR, while providing instant AI-powered feedback on learners’ performance. VirtualSpeech is now a multi-award winning training platform which has helped over 350,000 students across 130+ countries to improve their skills and confidence through VR and AI. Clients include leading multinationals and Universities including Vodafone and Warwick Business School. Sophie has won numerous awards for her pioneering work with emerging technologies in education, including Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Most Inspirational Woman in Tech, and Start-Up Learning Provider of the Year. In 2019 she was named as one of the Progress 1000 - London's 1000 most influential people and in 2020 VirtualSpeech's public speaking course was named in Forbes as one of the ten best online business courses. Sophie has spoken about her journey with VirtualSpeech live on BBC World News, as well as been featured in The New York Times, Huffington Post and Wall Street Journal.