The 2013 IEEE Region 10 Humanitarian Technology Conference was held at Tohoku University in Sendai, Japan on August 26-29, 2013. The focus of this conference was “Lessons learned from the 2011 Great East Japan Earthquake disaster and its worldwide effects.” This conference was a very important event for humanitarian technology community in Region 10. Furthermore, three Presidents of the IEEE attended this event – a very rare occurrence!
The Tokyo IEEE GOLD Affinity Group was a key partner in organizing this conference, especially the lecture by Dr. Gordon Day, past president of IEEE. The welcome reception was also organized by Tokyo GOLD. To ensure a good start to the conference, we carefully prepared and discussed these two opening events. We began the conference with a high level of motivation, since the lecture by Dr. Gordon Day had a strong positive message which resonated with young engineers and researchers.
For the welcome reception and party, we tried to offer a chance for participants of all ages to enjoy deep, meaningful interactions with each other in a friendly environment. In support of this goal, we offered food buffet-style and prepared the local drink “Sake of Tohoku” for a topic to discuss. During the reception, we also saw a presentation of the IEEE Region 10 Student/GOLD/WIE Congress Report by an IEEE Student member and a presentation of the SIGHT introduction by Raja Amarnath, IEEE HQ HTC Adhoc. Finally, we showcased the current Tokyo GOLD activities in a poster session.
During this conference, Tokyo GOLD members had several meetings with SIGHT members and engaged in a deep exchange of ideas with other participants, sharing our activities and discussing future collaboration on Humanitarian Technology activities. Tohoku University, which is located in one of the areas heavily affected by the Tohoku Earthquake in 2011, was chosen as the conference venue and a tour of a tsunami-affected area was also held as part of the conference. This allowed conference participants to share the experience of the disaster and improve their motivation and vision for the future of Humanitarian Technology activities.
Tokyo IEEE GOLD achieved a great success with this conference, enabling us to share the importance of Humanitarian Technology activities in IEEE with many other professionals. We believe we can improve and accelerate Humanitarian Technology activities from now on, thanks to this success. For more details on the conference, visit the conference website at http://www.r10-htc2013.org/.
Article contributed by Kojiro Nishimiya, Tokyo IEEE GOLD AG