IIT AGNE 2016 Global Leadership Conference Awes Attendees
The IIT Association of Greater New England (IIT AGNE) hosted the 2016 Global Leadership Conference for the first time in New England at the Rhode Island Convention Center in Providence on Aug 12-14. With the theme: “Leading transformation for a better tomorrow: Technologies that lift the human spirit” the conference featured inspiring keynote speeches and lively panel discussions by world class leaders on a broad range of topics:
- Led by the strong life sciences and healthcare clusters in New England, including integrative medicine, effective healthcare delivery, robotics in medicine, advances in vaccines, and state-of-the-art genetically driven treatments.
- Impactful energy and environmental technologies from renewable energy generation and storage, water challenges and solutions, to energy markets and climate policy.
- Sessions on the frontiers of technology including the rapidly growing Internet of Things (IoT), CIO panel on the Cloud-based Enterprise, exploding Big Data Analytics, and unlocking the potential of social/civic data.
- Drawing on world class universities in New England, the Education sessions presented the trends in higher education, the torrent of information and data that is expected to redefine learning outcomes, and the democratization of education.
- Engaging sessions highlighting women in technology, their successes, and mentoring opportunities. Jo Miller, a nationally renowned authority on personal branding, conducted a lively workshop to help women identify their sources of influence.
- Panel sessions on the impact of technology in global and local finance, global trends in investment and finance, and how these will continue to change our lives in the decades to come.
- Thought-provoking discussions on how innovative social impact organizations are leveraging technology to tackle issues from health to environment, from urban slums to sustainable rural livelihoods, and access to quality and scalable educational resources for the growing youth population in India.
Friday evening featured an inspiring out-of-this-world presentation by Dr. Amitabha Ghosh, NASA Space Scientist and Chair of the Mars Rover Mission, and the frontiers of Perceptual Computing by Dr. Achin Bhowmik from Intel. This was followed by Sonika Vaid, the 20 year young, local music sensation from American Idol fame, who captured everyone’s hearts.
Saturday morning featured several keynote speeches including the Indian Ambassadors Arun Singh and Riva Das, Eric Gebhardt, Chief Operations and Platforms Officer at GE Current, and Dr. Navin Budhiraja, SVP Architecture & Technology at Infosys.
Saturday evening keynotes were presented by Rajesh Subramaniam, EVP Global Marketing at FedEx, and Prof. Arun Sundararajan, from NYU Stern School of Business. This was followed by a music concert by Prasanna, acclaimed guitarist, Oscar winning film composer and IIT graduate, who brought the audience to their feet with his unique soundtracks from his incredible global band of musicians.
Sunday morning’s inspiring keynote speakers were Steve Kaufer, CEO and Founder, TripAdvisor, and Peeyush Ranjan, CTO, Flipkart. Awards were presented to the winners of the Business Plan competition and Student Poster competition, and former presidents of the IIT Alumni organization in New England were honored.
The all-volunteer team worked hard on organizing the conference for 18 months and it paid off in the flawless execution. The happy faces of the attendees from the intellectual stimulation, scrumptious Indian food, and world class entertainment, was a true testament to the high quality content of the conference and the excellent organizational skills of the volunteers. It is hoped that the work started at the conference and the relationships built during the conference will continue to grow and impact the world of technology in New England and beyond.