Innovating at the Inflection Point:
Creating a Better World
Click here to book your hotel room at Marriott with group rate ($279 + tax)
MIT’s Mission Statement highlights its commitment to bringing “knowledge to bear on the world’s great challenges.” Indeed, as the world emerges from a once-in-a-century pandemic, challenges have only multiplied in the face of geopolitical conflict and political turbulence. Compounded by the increasing effects of climate change, these events continue to impact global food supply and security, economic growth and inclusion, international trade, and the environment.
Together with partners in industry and government, MIT faculty and researchers continue to seek compelling problems where MIT innovation can make a transformative impact. Please join us at our annual Research and Development Conference on November 15-16, 2022 to hear from MIT researchers, MIT Startup Exchange entrepreneurs, and global business leaders dedicated to innovating to create a better world.
In addition to plenary sessions, attendees will choose among eight tracks:
Day One Concurrent Tracks
Special Offering for ILP Members
In-person conference registrants are encouraged to attend our pre-conference workshop on November 14th from 2:00-5:00 PM. This free in-person workshop will explore the results of a follow-on study of last year's report, The Changing Landscape of Corporate-Startup Engagement, conducted by MIT Corporate Relations and InnoLead. The event will be facilitated by Senior Lecturer, Phil Budden, and InnoLead CEO, Scott Kirsner.
The workshop requires a separate registration. For more information and to register, please visit this page.
Live Streaming available to ILP members
This conference will be held in a hybrid format combined as an in-person event with online live streaming available to ILP members only.
Current ILP members will be able to register either In-Person or Live Streaming registration type. Live Streaming link will be sent to registrants a week before the conference.
Visiting MIT: https://www.mit.edu/visitmit/
Where to Stay: https://institute-events.mit.edu/visit/where-to-stay
Registration Questions: firstname.lastname@example.org
Book your hotel room at Marriott with group rate ($279 + tax)
Guests may reserve their rooms by calling Marriott Central Reservations at 1-800-228-9290 or by using the reservation link. Guests may book their rooms online no later than October 24, 2022, to receive the discounted rate for the room block.
John Roberts has been Executive Director of MIT Corporate Relations (Interim) since February 2022. He obtained his Ph.D. in organic chemistry at MIT and returned to the university after a 20-year career in the pharmaceutical industry, joining the MIT Industrial Liaison Program (ILP) in 2013. Prior to his return, John worked at small, medium, and large companies, holding positions that allowed him to exploit his passions in synthetic chemistry, project leadership, and alliance management while growing his responsibilities for managing others, ultimately as a department head. As a program director at MIT, John built a portfolio of ILP member companies, mostly in the pharmaceutical industry and headquartered in Japan, connecting them to engagement opportunities in the MIT community. Soon after returning to MIT, John began to lead a group of program directors with a combined portfolio of 60-80 global companies. In his current role, John oversees MIT Corporate Relations which houses ILP and MIT Startup Exchange.
Rebekah Miller joined the Office of Corporate Relations team as a Program Director in March 2022. Rebekah brings to the OCR expertise in the life sciences and chemical industries as well as in applications including sensors, consumer electronics, semiconductors and renewable energy.
Prior to joining the OCR, Rebekah worked for over a decade at Merck KGaA, most recently as a Global Key Account Manager in the Semiconductor division. Rebekah also served as Head of Business and Technology Development for the Semiconductor Specialty Accounts, during which time she led strategic planning and technology roadmapping.
While at Merck KGaA, Miller established a strong track record in industry-university partnerships, corporate entrepreneurship, and innovation management, with experience in roles spanning Technology Scouting, Alliance Management, and New Business Development. Early in her career, she led early phase R&D projects as a member of the Boston Concept Lab, which focused on technology transfer from academia.
Miller earned her B.A. in Chemistry and Biology from Swarthmore College and her Ph.D. in Chemistry, with a Designated Emphasis in Nanoscale Science and Engineering, from the University of California, Berkeley. She first joined MIT as a postdoctoral associate in the Bioengineering and Material Science Departments.
Randall S. Wright is a program director with MIT's Industrial Liaison Program. He manages the interface between the managements of companies, headquartered in the United States and Europe, and the senior administration and faculty of MIT.
As a program director for MIT, he convenes teams of researchers and faculty members to provide on-going emerging technology intelligence and strategic advice for the world's leading technology companies. He is a sought-after speaker, delivering keynote speeches focused on emerging technology opportunities and challenges, and counter-intuitive insights in executive panels and discussions. Randall draws on extensive experience advising executives on a range of emerging technology areas including digital transformation, big data, robotics, green buildings, water efficiency, energy storage, biofuels, advanced materials, and manufacturing. He provides navigation and recommendations on the emerging technologies and adoption landscapes critical to future business growth, as well as creation, development, and execution of programs of research between industry and MIT.
Randall has been bestowed by Federal President of Austria Dr. Heinz Fischer with the decoration Cross of Honor in Gold for Services to the Republic of Austria for his "outstanding contribution to the development of relations between Austria and MIT".
Prior to MIT, Randall was a marketing manager for Pfizer, Inc., a major U.S. pharmaceuticals company. He was also a strategic planning analyst for Pennzoil Company--a Fortune 500 oil and natural resources company. Randall is an invited lecturer at Northeastern University's Executive M.B.A. Program where he lectures on innovation and corporate strategy. His column Innovation Counterculture looks at ideas and perspectives on strategy, organization, and thinking to help executives connect to the world of innovation outside their organizations and he is published regularly in Research-Technology Management, the award-winning journal of the Industrial Research Institute.
Richard Lester is the Japan Steel Industry Professor and Associate Provost at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he oversees the international activities of the Institute. From 2009 to 2015 he served as head of MIT’s Department of Nuclear Science and Engineering, leading the Department successfully through a period of rapid rebuilding and strategic renewal.
Professor Lester’s research is concerned with innovation strategy and management, with a frequent focus on the energy and manufacturing sectors. He is widely known for his work on local, regional, and national systems of innovation, and he has led major studies of national and regional competitiveness and innovation performance commissioned by governments and industry groups around the world. He is the founding director and faculty chair of the MIT Industrial Performance Center.
Professor Lester is also well known for his teaching and research on nuclear technology innovation, management and control. He has been a long-time advocate of advanced nuclear reactor and fuel cycle technologies to improve the safety and economic performance of nuclear power, and his studies in the field of nuclear waste management helped provide the foundation for new institutional and technological strategies to deal with this longstanding problem.
Professor Lester’s latest book, Unlocking Energy Innovation: How America Can Build a Low-Cost, Low-Carbon Energy System (written with David Hart), outlines a strategy for mobilizing America’s innovation resources in support of a decades-long transition to an affordable and reliable low-carbon global energy system. Professor Lester is also the author or co-author of seven other books, including: The Productive Edge: A New Strategy for Economic Growth; Innovation—The Missing Dimension (with Michael Piore); Making Technology Work: Applications in Energy and the Environment (with John Deutch); Made in America: Regaining the Productive Edge (with Michael Dertouzos and Robert Solow); and Radioactive Waste: Management and Regulation (with Mason Willrich.)
Professor Lester obtained his undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from Imperial College and earned his Ph.D. in nuclear engineering from MIT. He has been a member of the MIT faculty since 1979. He is an advisor to governments, corporations, foundations and non-profit groups, and he serves as chair of the National Academies’ Board on Science, Technology, and Economic Policy.governments, corporations, foundations and non-profit groups, and he serves as chair of the National Academies’ Board on Science, Technology, and Economic Policy.
As an institution, MIT makes a commitment to “generating, disseminating, and preserving knowledge, and to working with others to bring this knowledge to bear on the world’s great challenges.” One component of MIT’s success in anticipating and addressing challenges is a ‘bottom-up’ process, driven by collective commitment from faculty, which positions it to see into the future and place ‘bets’ in anticipation of what’s ahead. Additionally, MIT benefits from a network of collaborations with industrial partners and peer institutions, through which there is a constant exchange of knowledge and ideas.
Michael Schrage is a research fellow with the MIT Sloan School of Management's Initiative on the Digital Economy. His research, writing, and advisory work focuses on the behavioral economics of models, prototypes, and metrics as strategic resources for managing innovation risk and opportunity. He is author of the award-winning book The Innovator’s Hypothesis (MIT Press, 2014), Who Do You Want Your Customers to Become? (Harvard Business Review Press, 2012), and Serious Play (Harvard Business Review Press, 2000). His latest book, Recommendation Engines, was published in September 2020 by MIT Press as part of its Essential Knowledge series. He's done consulting and advisory work for Microsoft, Procter & Gamble, British Telecom, BP, Siemens, Embraer, Google, iRise, the Office of Net Assessment, and other organizations
Schrage has run design workshops and executive education programs on innovation, experimentation, and strategic measurement for organizations all over the world and is currently pioneering work in selvesware technologies designed to augment aspects, attributes, and talents of productive individuals. He is particularly interested in the future co-evolution of expertise, advice, and human agency as technologies become smarter than the people using them.
Elisabeth Reynolds most recently held a position at the National Economic Council as Special Assistant to the President for Manufacturing and Economic Development. Prior, Dr. Reynolds was a principal research scientist and executive director of the MIT Industrial Performance Center, as well as a lecturer in MIT’s Department of Urban Studies and Planning (DUSP). Her research examines systems of innovation and economic development more broadly with a focus on advanced manufacturing, growing innovative companies to scale, and building innovation capacity in developed and developing countries. Prior to coming to MIT, Reynolds was the director of the City Advisory Practice at the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC), a non-profit focused on job and business growth in urban areas. She has been actively engaged in efforts to rebuild manufacturing capabilities in the U.S., most recently as a member of the Massachusetts Advanced Manufacturing Collaborative. She is a graduate of Harvard College and holds a Master’s in Economics from the University of Montreal as well as a PhD from MIT DUSP.
Suzanne Berger is the inaugural John M. Deutch Institute Professor. Her current research focuses on politics and globalization. She recently co-chaired the MIT Production in the Innovation Economy project, and in September 2013 published Making in America: From Innovation to Market. She created the MIT International Science and Technology Initiative, and participated in the 1989 Made in America project at MIT. She wrote Made By Hong Kong and Global Taiwan (with Richard K. Lester). She is the author of Notre Première Mondialisation and How We Compete. Her earlier work focused on political development (Peasants Against Politics) and the organization of interests (Dualism and Discontinuity in Industrial Societies and Organizing Interests in Western Europe).
Suzanne Berger served as Head of the MIT Department of Political Science, founding chair of the SSRC Committee on West Europe, and Vice President of the American Political Science Association. She has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. The French government has awarded her the Palmes Academiques, Chevalier de l'Ordre National du Merite and the Légion d'Honneur.
Simon Johnson is the Ronald A. Kurtz (1954) Professor of Entrepreneurship at the MIT Sloan School of Management, where he is also head of the Global Economics and Management group and chair of the Sloan Fellows MBA Program Committee. He cofounded and currently leads the popular Global Entrepreneurship Lab (GLAB) course – over the past 16 years, MBA students in GLAB have worked on more than 500 projects with start-up companies around the world.
He also works closely with Joi Ito, head of MIT’s Media Lab, on the Digital Currency Initiative (DCI). Specifically, Johnson supervises research projects related to blockchain technology, and teaches a course (with Michael Casey and Brian Forde) on this fast developing business sector. Johnson is not an investor in bitcoin or any bitcoin-related startups, but he works closely with MIT students and others who want to build better companies.
Johnson is a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, D.C., a cofounder of BaselineScenario.com, and a member since inception of the FDIC’s Systemic Resolution Advisory Committee. In July 2014, Johnson joined the Financial Research Advisory Committee of the U.S. Treasury’s Office of Financial Research (OFR); he chairs the recently formed Global Vulnerabilities Working Group.
Over the past seven years, Johnson has published more than 300 high impact pieces in the New York Times, Bloomberg, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, The New Republic, BusinessWeek, The Huffington Post, The Financial Times, and Project Syndicate.
“The Quiet Coup” received over a million views when it appeared in The Atlantic in early 2009. His book 13 Bankers: the Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown (with James Kwak), was an immediate bestseller and has become one of the mostly highly regarded books on the financial crisis. Their follow-up book on U.S. fiscal policy, White House Burning: The Founding Fathers, Our National Debt, and Why It Matters for You, won praise across the political spectrum. Johnson’s academic research on economic development, corporate finance, and political economy is widely cited.
From March 2007 through the end of August 2008, Johnson was the International Monetary Fund's Economic Counsellor (chief economist) and Director of its Research Department.
Johnson holds a B.A. in economics and politics from the University of Oxford, an M.A. in economics from the University of Manchester, and a Ph.D. in economics from MIT.
The panel discussion will discuss innovation strategy in the context of disruptive forces: (COVID) Digitization, Global Conflict, Manufacturing onshoring and reverse globalization, Climate change, and Economic recession.
As founder and chairman of St1 Nordic, Mika Anttonen is dedicated to realizing the vision of St1 as a leading producer and seller and CO2-aware energy, positioning St1 to be at the forefront of the energy industry in the transition process. Under his direction, St1 has developed renewable energy sources such as geothermal energy, industrial wind power, and waste-based ethanol fuels. Mr. Anttonen founded the company, originally known as Greenenergy Baltic, in 1995. Prior, Mr. Anttonen studied energy technologies at Helsinki University of Technology and worked in international product trading at Neste.
Mr. Anttonen will describe an energy industry in transition, as the sector confronts foundational shifts including climate change and geopolitical realignments. As an example, Mr. Anttonen will describe St1 Nordic’s trajectory to become a leading producer and seller of CO2-aware energy, incorporating renewable energy sources such as geothermal energy, industrial wind power, and waste-based ethanol fuels.
The question and answer session will address how to “see around the corner” in an industry facing major disruptive forces and execute on a successful innovation strategy that results in true business transformation.
The MIT Professional Education mission is to provide a gateway to renowned MIT research, knowledge and expertise for working professionals engaged in science and technology worldwide, through advanced education programs designed for them. The programs are delivered by MIT faculty and promote technical excellence through ongoing educational engagement with communities of practice. MIT Professional Education fosters the development of innovative leaders equipped to address complex problems globally.
Hala is Managing Director at Solve. She oversees Solve’s work advancing tech solutions to economic, social, and environmental global Challenges through open innovation and partnership. Hala’s career revolves around building catalytic partnerships and strategies for social impact. This work has included a public-private initiative for employment in the Middle East at the World Economic Forum, advising governments on public sector reform and donor engagement through her work at the World Bank and the UN, and building strategies and business models for nonprofits. Her last appointment at the World Economic Forum was as Director of Strategy and Impact. In 2015, she cofounded a policy platform that counts over 100,000 subscribers. Hala holds two Master's degrees—one in Public Policy from Harvard University, and one in Development Economics from American University, DC. She earned a Bachelor's degree in Economics from the American University of Beirut. She served as a Global Leadership Fellow of the World Economic Forum and as Senior Advisor to the Women Political Leaders Global Forum.
Solve is an initiative of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a mission to drive innovation to solve world challenges. Solve is a marketplace for social impact innovation. Through open innovation Challenges, Solve finds incredible tech-based social entrepreneurs all around the world. Solve then brings together MIT’s innovation ecosystem and a community of Members to fund and support these entrepreneurs to help them drive lasting, transformational impact.
Mr. David Martin joined Corporate Relations on August 15, 2018 as Program Director for the ILP. Over time, Martin will take on more ILP members in the Middle East.
Martin comes to OCR with deep and broad knowledge and expertise in program management, innovation, commercial and government contracting, and strategic planning. In his most recent position at Altran (Burlington, MA) as the VP Programs, Dave had many major accomplishments including leading an innovation team to develop new technology in the beverage-filling industry, and managing client-facing relations supporting sales and execution of projects. Before that, he was at Windmill International as VP, Product Development, R&D. There he spearheaded the move into new markets for an innovative satellite communications product including through the SBIR program where he secured funding and sponsorship. Martin also leveraged other government programs collaborating with the DoD and congressional contacts. He began his career in the US Air Force as an Active Duty Captain and served for 10 years as an Acquisition Manager, Scientist, Test Director, and finally as Executive Officer in the Executive Office for Command, Control and Communications Systems in the Pentagon. Martin also served in the US Air Force Reserves before joining Windmill.
Mr. Martin earned his B.S., Physics from MIT, and his M.S., Systems Management from the University of Denver. He also earned a Certificate in Information Systems at the University of Denver.
Dr Phil Budden is a Senior Lecturer at MIT's Management School, in Sloan's TIES (Tech Innovation, Entrepreneurship and Strategy) Group, where he focuses on 'corporate innovation’ and multi-stakeholder innovation ecosystems, especially how corporates can get value from the latter (including start-up enterprises). He works closely with corporate executives and leaders of other large organisations on such strategies, through MIT Corporate Relations/ILP, the Corporate Innovation Program (https://corporateinnovation.mit.edu), Executive Education (https://executive.mit.edu/ci) and MIT’s global REAP program (https://reap.mit.edu), as well as custom and consulting work.
Scott Kirsner is a journalist who writes about innovation and entrepreneurship. His “Innovation Economy” column appears Sundays in the Boston Globe, and he is also editor of the site Innovation Leader (www.innovationleader.com), which focuses on R&D, product development, corporate venturing, and new initiatives within large companies. Scott has been a regular contributor to Fast Company, BusinessWeek, Variety, and Wired. His books include Fans, Friends & Followers: Building an Audience and a Creative Career in the Digital Age, a technological history of Hollywood. He can be reached at email@example.com and his Twitter handle is @ScottKirsner.
MIT Corporate Relations has been working together with InnoLead this year on a Research Report evaluating the changing nature of Corporate Engagement with the wider Startup Ecosystem. This is building on the Research Report we jointly released last year on The Changing Landscape of Corporate-Startup Engagement. We have used the preliminary results of that survey and focused interviews to conduct a Corporate Venture Group Workshop that we help yesterday evening. In this session, Scott Kirsner and Dr. Phillip Budden will present a summary of the results to date and of the Workshop outcomes.
Julie Ferland is Shell’s Vice President of Innovation Excellence, infusing Shell’s Technology teams with innovative capabilities and tools to Power Progress Together. Julie previously led Shell TechWorks, Shell’s entrepreneurial innovation hub in Boston, as General Manager.
Prior to joining Shell, Julie was Vice President of Engineering at Hydroid, creating advanced unmanned maritime solutions for defense, research, and commercial applications, and held the position of Vice President and Principal Engineer at Maritime Applied Physics Corporation, designing and building ship systems and advanced defense systems. She has served as an Engineering Duty Officer and Surface Warfare Officer in the US Navy, working as naval architect, salvage diver, and gas turbine engineer. Julie holds an Engineer Degree in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering and a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from MIT and a Bachelor of Science Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Harvard University.
Outside of work, Julie enjoys being outdoors with her family, including paddling, skiing, running, and swimming close to home and around the world.
Michal is Regional Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation LLC, East North America. Located at the Innovation Center in Cambridge, she leads the Johnson & Johnson Innovation team to curate and cultivate the most promising, early-stage healthcare innovations in the region, spanning across pharmaceutical, consumer health and medical devices.
Prior to joining Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Michal served as the Executive Director of Harvard University’s Office of Technology Development (OTD) Harvard Medical School site, where she was responsible for development and commercialization of technologies emerging from research at HMS laboratories and for the strategy and execution of all industry collaborations. She negotiated agreements with major biopharma, life sciences, food and cosmetics companies to advance the translation of discoveries into products and create a revenue-generating product pipeline and worked with scientific founders and investors to create new startup companies.
Before joining Harvard University’s OTD in 2005, Michal held several senior business and technology development leadership positions in the biotech and tech industries and co-founded a biotechnology startup.
Michal serves on the Board of Directors for MassBio and the Kendall Square Association (KSA) and on the Advisory Board at LabCentral Ignite. She is also a member of the Scientific Advisory Board's FutuRx Accelerator.
We welcome two ILP Member companies to join Scott Kirsner and Phil Budden in a conversation around their experiences in engaging with the wider startup ecosystem to explore some of the different ways these interactions occur and can support core business goals.
Ariadna Rodenstein is a Program Manager at MIT Startup Exchange. She joined MIT Corporate Relations as an Events Leader in September 2019 and is responsible for designing and executing startup events, including content development, coaching and hosting, and logistics. Ms. Rodenstein works closely with the Industrial Liaison Program (ILP) in promoting collaboration and partnerships between MIT-connected startups and industry, as well as with other areas around the MIT innovation ecosystem and beyond.
Prior to working for MIT Corporate Relations, she worked for over a decade at Credit Suisse Group in New York and London, in a few different roles in event management and as Director of Client Strategy. Ms. Rodenstein has combined her experience in the private sector with work at non-profits as a Consultant and Development Director at New York Immigration Coalition, Immigrant Defense Project, and Americas Society/Council of the Americas. She also served as an Officer on the Board of Directors of the Riverside Clay Tennis Association in New York for several years. Additionally, she earned her B.A. in Political Science and Communications from New York University, with coursework at the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey in Mexico City, and her M.A. in Sociology from the City University of New York.
Dr. Cyrus Shaoul obtained his BSc in Cognitive Science from MIT in 1993, and his PhD from the University of Alberta in 2012. While at MIT he was an undergraduate researcher at the Media Lab. He co-founded one of the first Internet technology companies in Japan in 1994, called Digital Garage. Cyrus is a co-founder and the CEO of Leela AI. He and his team are laser-focused on building a scalable solution to the problem of building a new, more powerful kind of visual intelligence. Cyrus speaks Japanese, French and Spanish.
Elaheh Ahmadi is a co-founder and CEO of Themis AI. She received her BSc and MEng in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science from MIT. Ahmadi and her peers at MIT CSAIL spun-off Themis AI with the vision to bring fair AI into the industry. Themis AI is a leader in providing high-performance and risk-robust AI solutions — identifying and tackling bias, uncertainty, and other real-world generalization challenges.
Benedetto J. Buratti is the Co-Founder and Head of Data Science at Einblick, a Data Science platform spin-off from Brown University and MIT. Before founding Einblick in 2019, Benedetto was a Ph.D. student in the Theory group at Brown, working with Eli Upfal and Tim Kraska on Automated Machine Learning and Neural Networks. Benedetto holds two MSc degrees in Computer Science and Data Science from Brown and Sapienza University and a BEng in Control Engineering from Sapienza.
Katie is the Founder and CEO of Claira, a competency analytics platform helping companies understand their workforce and hire better. Before starting Claira, Katie spent 10 years in global workforce development, where it became clear that customers and the market were ready for a more precise, inclusive future of work. Katie regularly speaks and writes on a variety of topics including diversity hiring, ai ethics, and automation impact on the workforce.
Previously, Katie worked for the United States Attorney’s Office, Department of Justice, Executive Office of the President, The White House and the State of Michigan. She holds an MBA from MIT Sloan School of Management and an MPA from the University of Michigan, Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and a BA in Political Science from Hope College. She also played and coached volleyball for 20 years.
Mark is a Project Manager and Senior Engineer at Finwave Semiconductor. He has been with the company since its early days when he worked to refine the technology and fabrication process through university-scale R&D fabrication. He now manages Finwave’s ARPA-E funded project to bring their revolutionary 3DGAN technology to full-scale production in the US, as well as oversees internal device characterization. Prior to joining the MIT spin-off, Mark earned a BS and MS in Electrical Engineering from Lehigh University where he studied GaN physics under Professor Nelson Tansu. He went on to work in the silicon semiconductor industry leading a team on power MOSFET failure analysis before ultimately returning to the world of GaN to work alongside Finwave’s CEO, co-founder, and MIT graduate Bin Lu.
Dr. Faye Wu (S.B. '09, S.M. '12, Ph.D. '17) is the CTO and a co-founder of Manus Robotics, a wearable technology startup dedicated to improving human capabilities. While at MIT, Faye researched medical device design, instrumentation, robotics control, and machine learning. The team she led, developing a device to help those with macular degeneration, was selected as a winner of the IDEAS Global Challenge and a finalist of the World Technology Awards. She also invented the Supernumerary Robotic Fingers, a wrist-mounted robot that assists hemiplegic patients with activities of daily living, which prompted the founding of Manus Robotics. Besides overseeing the R&D efforts at Manus, Faye has led the team to win various awards and recognitions, including receiving an NSF Small Business Innovation Research grant and being selected as a finalist of the 2021 MassChallenge Houston cohort.
Felipe Ortiz is Product Manager at Skylla Technologies.
Andrew Magyar, PhD is the co-founder and CTO of Capra Biosciences. Dr. Magyar first became excited about the power of biology as a graduate student working in Angela Belcher's lab at MIT where he developed bio-templated catalysts for solar hydrogen production. As a research scientist at Draper, Dr. Magyar helped to build their synthetic biology team - leveraging Draper's unique capabilities at the interface of biology and engineering to capture more than $30M in government contracts. Through engagement with leaders in industry and government, Dr. Magyar identified that cost-effective solutions for manufacturing products using biology at scale is a key challenge facing industry. Together with his co-founder and Capra's CEO, Elizabeth Onderko, Ph.D., Dr. Magyar started Capra Biosciences leveraging advances in both biology and hardware to make cost-competitive sustainable chemicals.
William T. (Bill) Mahoney is the Chief Operating Officer of QuesTek Innovations, LLC. Bill is also the CEO of WTM Development, LLC, a strategic advisory and operations services firm. Through this entity, Bill currently serves on the Boards of QuesTek International, LLC, Mid-America Applied Technologies Corporation, Intelligent Manufacturing Systems International, and the World Manufacturing Foundation. His most recent operations contract prior to QuesTek was as CEO of ASM International, the world’s largest professional technical society for materials scientists, engineers, and technicians. Bill held that post between September, 2016 and November, 2020. Bill is a Harvard graduate and former member of both the Harvard Crew and the US National Rowing Team.
Erez Kaminski is the CEO and Founder of Ketryx Corporation, a company striving to create innovative new approaches to regulated software development. Over the last decade, he worked in various industries, including computational mathematics, biotech, and energy, developing mission-critical applications like monitoring systems for pharmaceutical equipment and AI for medication management. Erez is deeply concerned with improving patient care and health outcomes with software solutions. Through Ketryx, he is redefining the complex process of regulated software development and empowering others to change lives and improve software safety and quality.
Prior to Ketryx, Erez worked with Amgen, the world’s largest biotechnology company, as the head of AI/ML for their medical device division and with Wolfram Research, the builders of Mathematica and Wolfram|Alpha. Throughout his career, Erez has helped companies large and small build and improve the safety and reliability of their software. He now dedicates his time and focus to improving patient safety and expanding the possibilities for regulated software development, especially as they pertain to AI/ML and Open Source software.
Erez holds a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a Master of Business Administration from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and served as a platoon sergeant in the Israel Defense Forces.
With a background in chemistry and nanomaterials, Kathryn has focused on the translation of academic research breakthroughs into impactful products, working across disciplines of biology, chemistry, and engineering. Prior to co-founding Vaxess, Kathryn was a postdoctoral research fellow in the Department of Chemistry & Chemical Biology at Harvard. Kathryn began her career in research and development at Merck. She holds a BA in chemistry from Colby College and a PhD in Physical Chemistry from Northwestern University.
Startups at Lunch Exhibit Only
Dr. Anthony is Associate Director of MIT.nano, Faculty Lead for the Industry Immersion Program in Mechanical Engineering, and Co-Director of the MIT Clinical Research Center. With over 25 years’ experience in product realization—Dr. Anthony won an Emmy (from the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences) in broadcast technical innovation—Dr. Anthony designs instruments and techniques to monitor and control physical systems. His work involves systems analysis and design and calling upon mechanical, electrical, and optical engineering, along with computer science and optimization, to create solutions.
The focus of Dr. Anthony’s research is computational instrumentation—the design of instruments and techniques to measure and control complex physical systems. His research includes the development of instrumentation and measurement solutions for manufacturing systems and medical diagnostics and imaging systems. In addition to his academic work, he has extensive experience in market-driven technology innovation, product realization, and business entrepreneurship and commercialization at the intersection between information technology and advanced manufacturing. His teaching interests include the modelling of large-scale systems in a wide variety of decision-making domains and the development of optimization algorithms and software for analyzing and designing such systems. He has extensive experience in market-driven technology innovation as well as business entrepreneurship.
Duane S. Boning is Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, where he holds the Clarence J. LeBel chair. He is affiliated with the MIT Microsystems Technology Laboratories, where he serves as Associate Director for Computation and CAD. He also serves as Co-Director of the MIT Leaders for Global Operations (LGO) dual MBA/Engineering Master’s degree program. He received SB, SM, and PhD degrees in electri¬cal engineering and computer science from MIT. From 1991 to 1993 he was a Member Technical Staff at the Texas Instruments Semiconductor Process and Design Center in Dal¬las, Texas, before returning to MIT to join the EECS faculty.
At MIT, he served as Associate Head for Electrical Engineering in the EECS Department from 2004 to 2011, as Director of the MIT-Masdar Institute Cooperative Program from 2011 to 2018, and as Faculty Lead of the MIT-Skoltech Initiative from 2011 through 2013. From July 2019 to June 2021 he is Associate Chair of the MIT Faculty. Dr. Boning is a Fellow of the IEEE, and was Editor in Chief for the IEEE Transactions on Semiconductor Manufacturing from 2001 to 2011. His research interests include statistical and machine learning methods for the modeling and control of variation in IC and photonics process¬es, devices, and circuits. Particular emphases includes modeling of chemical mechanical polishing (CMP), plasma etch, and embossing processes; and design for manufacturing (DFM) in IC and photonic technologies. He is co-editor of the book Machine Learning in VLSI Computer-Aided Design (Springer 2019).
Erik Mirandette leads Product and Ecosystem at Tulip, the leader in frontline operations technology spun out of MIT. He has 15+ years experience in building and leading teams in operations and product development. Today, Tulip has raised over $150M dollars in venture capital, employs 260+ people and supports 500+ customers with operations in over 20+ countries.
Prior to Tulip, Erik served as a military officer for over six years assigned to the Air Force Strategic Counterintelligence Branch with tours in Afghanistan, Southeast Asia and Japan. Erik, a Tillman Scholar, also spent time in the non-profit space based in North Africa, and in venture capital prior to joining Tulip.
Erik holds a B.S. from the Air Force Academy, an M.A from Norwich University, an M.B.A from M.I.T. He is the author of “The Only Road North” a memoir of his experiences in Africa.
Steven Moskowitz, Ph.D. is the Director of Digital Transformation at Entegris, a specialty chemicals and materials company supporting the semiconductor & life science industries. In this role, Steve is helping to lead Entegris in the use of Digital Solutions across the entire enterprise. An important aspect of that is to craft and support a culture of digital thinking, curiosity, and innovation. Prior to this role, Steve spent about 7 years leading our Innovation Management process as part of the CTO office. Before joining Entegris, he spent 15 years at IBM in a variety of roles within the semiconductor processing fab – from R&D to lean manufacturing to applying lean six sigma principles to R&D. Before joining industry, Steve received his Ph.D. in Chemistry at the University of Washington and his BS in Chemistry at the University of Rochester. He lives in Massachusetts, where he enjoys cycling, local music, good food, and spending time with family, friends, and his dog, Gracie.
The panel will cover experiences and lessons learned deploying Industry 4.0, opportunities and road blocks.
Advanced manufacturing, and semiconductor manufacturing, in particular, provides many opportunities but also challenges for machine learning. State-of-the-art factories collect enormous amounts of highly diverse sensor data. Such data can give insight into the health of the equipment and process, enabling rapid anomaly detection. For virtual metrology, sensor data reflecting chamber operation can enable the estimation of resulting wafer states in place of costly ex-situ wafer measurement. For process optimization and control, combinations of empirical learning algorithms and existing physical models or digital twins are of great interest. However, practical application of existing machine learning methods to these needs in semiconductor (and other) manufacturing contexts often encounter important challenges: small data and concept drift. While any one run may have a large amount of sensor data, only a relatively small number of runs are available compared to what is needed for many machine learning methods (e.g., very few or no "bad" runs for training an anomaly detector). In addition, the accuracy of carefully constructed models often "decay" with time, due to subtle drift in equipment, wafer, or fab environment. These can be addressed by calling on or extending a rich set of less common machine learning methods, ranging from density estimation, time series methods, and Bayesian approaches, in addition to deep learning. The future of manufacturing requires machine intelligence, and machine learning research will also benefit from the challenging opportunities and problems that can be found in manufacturing.
David Mindell is an engineer and historian. An expert in human relationships with robotics and autonomous systems, he has led or participated in more than 25 oceanographic expeditions. From 2005 to 2011 he was Director of MIT’s Program in Science, Technology, and Society. He is the author of five books and co-founder of Humatics Corporation, which develops technologies to transform how robots and autonomous systems work in human environments.
Today, industry is poised on the precipice of a new revolution, using an array of new technologies to combine decarbonization with equitable labor. We are familiar with the ingredients, including: robotics, AI and autonomy, electrification, advanced manufacturing, and new forms of remote and hybrid work. Yet we still lack a vision for how they all converge in a new industrial world that serves human and planetary needs.
Like the industrial revolution that began in the 18th century, the coming revolution will not simply happen but will be driven by ideas and people. What does industry look like when it strives to optimize for lowest carbon footprint as well as the greatest profit? When it upholds dignified, inclusive, sustainable work? This talk will begin to frame these questions and challenge the group to contribute to the answers. MIT’s recent Task Force on The Work of the Future showed that technology is neither the problem nor the solution. We can build better jobs if we create institutions and machines that leverage technological innovation and also support workers though long cycles of technological transformation. We must act to ensure that the labor market of the future offers benefits, opportunity, and a measure of economic security to all. The US Federal Government has made major inroads through policy changes in recent months. What should private industry be doing to invest in technologies to advance decarbonization and equitable labor?
Wojciech Matusik is a Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at MIT, where he leads the Computational Fabrication Group and is a member of the Computer Graphics Group. Before coming to MIT, he worked at Mitsubishi Electric Research Laboratories, Adobe Systems, and Disney Research Zurich. He studied computer graphics at MIT and received his PhD in 2003. He also received a BS in EECS from the University of California at Berkeley in 1997 and MS in EECS from MIT in 2001. His research interests are in computer graphics, computational design and fabrication, computer vision, robotics, and hci. In 2004, he was named one of the world’s top 100 young innovators by MIT’s Technology Review Magazine. In 2009, he received the Significant New Researcher Award from ACM Siggraph. In 2012, Matusik received the DARPA Young Faculty Award and he was named a Sloan Research Fellow. In 2014, he received Ruth and Joel Spira Award for Excellence in Teaching.
AI methods promise to accelerate R&D and reduce manufacturing costs. However, developing manufacturing systems that incorporate AI face serious challenges. I will describe the efforts in my group to build practical AI methods to accelerate R&D processes. In particular, I will showcase how multi-objective Bayesian optimization can be used to search the space of material formulations and find formulations with optimal performance characteristics. I will also describe our latest methods that allow finding molecular structures with desired properties using limited experimental data. Finally, I will show manufacturing systems that incorporate sensing and digital feedback loop to ensure optimal system performance.
John D. Sterman is the Jay W. Forrester Professor of Management at the MIT Sloan School of Management and a Professor in the MIT Institute for Data, Systems, and Society. He is also the Director of the MIT System Dynamics Group and the MIT Sloan Sustainability Initiative.
Sterman’s research centers on improving decision-making in complex systems, including corporate strategy and operations, energy policy, public health, environmental sustainability, and climate change. His work ranges from the dynamics of organizational change and the implementation of sustainable improvement programs to climate change and the implementation of policies to promote a sustainable world. Sterman pioneered the development of “management flight simulators” of corporate and economic systems which are now used by corporations, universities, and governments around the world.
He is the author of many scholarly and popular articles on the challenges and opportunities facing organizations today, including the book, Modeling for Organizational Learning, and the award-winning textbook, Business Dynamics.
Sterman is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and received an honorary doctorate from the Università della Svizzera italiana, Switzerland. He has twice been awarded the Jay W. Forrester Prize for the best published work in system dynamics; has won an IBM Faculty Award as well as the Accenture Award for the best paper of the year published in the California Management Review. He received the Best Application Award from the System Dynamics Society for his work on climate change policy. At MIT, he has been recognized with the Samuel E. Seegal Faculty Prize, given to a professor who “inspires students in pursuing and achieving excellence,” the Jamieson Award for Excellence in Teaching, numerous other awards for teaching excellence; and was named one of MIT Sloan’s “Outstanding Faculty” by the BusinessWeek Guide to the Best Business Schools. His research has been featured in media around the world including the New York Times, Washington Post, Boston Globe ,Public Television’sNews Hour, National Public Radio’s Marketplace, WGBH, and other media for his innovative use of interactive simulations in management education and policymaking, particularly in climate change and energy policy.
Sterman holds an AB in engineering and environmental systems from Dartmouth College and a PhD in system dynamics from MIT.
To avoid severe harms from climate change, greenhouse gas emissions must fall to net zero by midcentury. Many countries and corporations around the world have responded with net zero pledges, but progress lags and there’s no consensus on how to meet these goals. We will use the interactive En-ROADS climate policy simulator to explore how we can limit climate change in time. Developed at MIT with non-profit Climate Interactive, En-ROADS is used by senior leaders in government, business, and civil society in the US and around the world. Science-based and non-partisan, En-ROADS simulates the economy, energy, and climate system, enabling users to explore the impact of dozens of policies to reduce emissions and immediately see the likely impacts including warming, sea level rise, crop yields, air quality, and economic growth.
Dr. C. Adam Schlosser is currently a Senior Research Scientist in the Center for Global Change Science, and also serves as the Deputy Director for the Joint Program at MIT. His primary interests are the modeling, prediction, and risk assessment of the natural, managed, and built water-energy-land systems using the MIT’s Integrated Global Systems Model (IGSM) that includes model development the Global Land System (GLS) and Water Resource System (WRS). Dr. Schlosser has undertaken studies within the disciplines of hydrology, biogeochemistry, permafrost, snow, weather, and climate as well as their predictability and limits-to-prediction. In doing so, he has worked with a wide range of numerical models, ranging from process-level to global-scale models, as well as observational data for evaluation and complementary analyses. He also has participated in and led international experiments aimed to assess the performance of Earth-system model simulations and predictions. In earlier work, he served as a member of the NASA Energy and Water Cycle Study (NEWS) Science Integration Team to improve our observational capabilities for monitoring, understanding and predicting the Earth’s global water and energy cycles. His current collaborative research activities include: extreme events and associating potential changes and risks on the natural, managed, and built environments; water-resource risk assessments to inform mitigation and adaptation strategies; and renewable-energy resource and intermittency assessments.
Climate change poses both risks and opportunities for business, now and in the future. However, investors, lenders, and insurers currently lack quantitative tools to view which companies will endure or flourish, and which companies are resilient or not. Measuring, managing, and reporting environmental impacts is not only important for the planet and the communities in which we work, but also essential for the future growth of our businesses. Among the key climate-related risks to society and business in particular are hydroclimatic risks (i.e., flood and drought). Projecting change in these risks are essential for the design, operation and management of public and private infrastructures. This is particularly true for large multi-national enterprises where their infrastructure and supply chains are located and connected across a wide-range of hydro-climatic zones. Based on our analysis, it is projected that 90% of all facilities face a Medium or High Climate Risk.
Fábio Duarte is a Lecturer in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning and the Center for Real Estate, and Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Senseable City Lab. Duarte’s most recent book is Urban play: make-believe, technology and space (MIT Press, 2021).
Nikita Klimenko is a Research Fellow at MIT Senseable City Lab and masters student in the Department of Architecture.
The way we live, work, and play is very different today than it was just a few decades ago, thanks in large part to a network of connectivity that now encompasses most people on the planet. In a similar way, today the Internet is entering the physical space – the traditional domain of architecture and design – opening the door to a variety of applications (from production to citizen participation, from energy to public health) and different scales (from understanding cities through our collective microbiome to geoengineering our plant). The contribution from Fábio Duarte and Nikita Klimenko will address these issues from a critical point of view through projects by the Senseable City Laboratory, a research initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Brent Minchew is a geophysicist working to understand the interactions between climate, the cryosphere, and the solid Earth. He uses a combination of geodetic observations—primarily interferometric synthetic aperture radar (InSAR)—and physical models to study dynamical systems and their various responses to environmental forcing.
The bulk of Minchew’s research focuses on the dynamics of extant glaciers, with an emphasis on the mechanics of glacier beds, ice-ocean interactions, and ice rheology. By modulating ice flow and directly influencing glacier erosion rates, these factors play critical roles in glacier and ice sheet evolution, the dynamic response of glaciers to climate change, and the impact of glaciers on landform evolution and the global carbon cycle over human to geological timescales.
Minchew’s preferred approach to understanding complex systems is to focus on short-timescale (hourly to sub-decadal) variations in the dynamics of large-scale systems in response to known forcings. Examples of this work include spatiotemporal observations and models of the dynamic response of glaciers to surface meltwater flux, ocean tidal forcing, and ice shelf thinning.
Large uncertainties in climate forecasts create massive challenges to mitigation and adaptation efforts needed to allow society to prepare for and adjust to changes in the climate system, such as increased storm severity and frequency, more severe droughts, sea-level rise, and ozone depletion. There is a critical need for high spatial and temporal resolution observations to enable planners, policy makers, and the rest of society to prepare for the changes to come. MIT researchers propose a Stratospheric Airborne Climate Observatory System (SACOS), an ensemble of unmanned solar powered aircraft capable of operating for weeks or months in the stratosphere, each integrally designed with instrument systems focused on a suite of climate-observing missions. Together, these enable a combination of long duration solar powered observing systems, each targeted at the highest priority risk factors that threaten global societal stability. Professor Minchew leads one of a series of Critical Observing Missions that is related to high latitude ice observations, focused on Antarctic Ice Shelf Collapse Forecasting and Greenland Glacier Flow Prediction.
Tomás Palacios is a Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT. He received his Ph.D. from the University of California - Santa Barbara in 2006 and his undergraduate degree in Telecommunication Engineering from the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid (Spain). His current research focuses on demonstrating new electronic devices and applications for novel semiconductor materials such as graphene and gallium nitride. His work has been recognized with multiple awards, including the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, the 2012 and 2019 IEEE George Smith Award, and the NSF, ONR, and DARPA Young Faculty Awards, among many others. Prof. Palacios is the founder and director of the MIT MTL Center for Graphene Devices and 2D Systems, as well as the Chief Advisor and co-founder of Finwave Semiconductor, Inc. He is a Fellow of IEEE.
Future 6G communication systems will connect trillions of electronic devices to revolutionize countless industries, from logistics to retail and manufacturing. For these 6G networks to be sustainable, the power consumption of the connected devices needs to be kept to a minimum. This seminar will describe some of the technologies that will enable this. For example, RF energy harvesting will allow future battery-less 6G sensor nodes to extract energy from RF signals in the 6G network, and use it to power ultra-low power electronics and communicate with the network base stations. Preliminary experimental results will be presented, as well as examples of applications in wearables and infrastructure monitoring.
Bringing massive connectivity to low-cost, low-power ocean sensors is important for numerous applications spanning marine sciences, sustainability, climatology, defense, robotics, geology, space exploration, and food security. However, standard IoT technologies (e.g., Bluetooth, WiFi, GPS) cannot operate underwater, which has left 70% of our planet (the ocean) beyond their reach. In this talk, I will describe how our research is changing this reality by inventing IoT technologies that are inherently designed for the ocean. Specifically, I will show how by rethinking the entire IoT technology stack in the context of oceans, my team introduced low-cost (< $100), net-zero-power, scalable connectivity technologies that seamlessly operate underwater and pave the way for massive underwater sensing, networking, localization, imaging, and machine learning. I will also discuss our recent explorations into a new technology for direct underwater-to-air communication. I will conclude the talk by describing how the fundamental innovations underlying our technologies extend beyond the ocean, and how my team also applies them to help address global problems in healthcare, robotics, and automation.
Jelena Notaros is the Robert J. Shillman (1974) Career Development Assistant Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Principal Investigator in the MIT Research Laboratory of Electronics, and a Core Faculty Member of the MIT Microsystems Technology Laboratories. She received her Ph.D. and M.S. degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2020 and 2017, respectively, and B.S. degree from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2015. Her research interests are in integrated silicon photonics devices, systems, and applications, with an emphasis on augmented-reality displays, LiDAR sensing for autonomous vehicles, free-space optical communications, quantum engineering, and biophotonics.
Jelena's work has been published in Nature, OSA, IEEE, and SPIE journals and conference proceedings. She was one of three Top DARPA Risers, a 2018 DARPA D60 Plenary Speaker, a 2021 Forbes 30 Under 30 Listee, an MIT Herbert E. (1933) and Dorothy J. Grier Presidential Fellow, a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow, a 2018 MIT EECS Rising Star, and an AIM Photonics Academy Supporting Instructor. Jelena was an invited speaker at 2022 OSA OFC, 2020 SPIE Photonics West, 2019 OSA CLEO, 2022 OSA COSI, 2020 OSA FiO, 2019 OSA IPR, 2020 OSA NETWORKS, 2021 OSA AIO, and 2019 IEEE Photonics North. She was the recipient of the MIT Robert J. Shillman (1974) Career Development Chair, 2020 MIT RLE Early Career Development Award, 2019 OSA CLEO Chair's Pick Award, 2014 IEEE Region 5 Student Paper Competition Award, 2019 MIT MARC Best Overall Paper Award and Best Pitch Award, 2018 and 2014 OSA Incubic Milton Chang Student Travel Grant, 2014 Sigma Xi Undergraduate Research Award, 2015 CU Boulder Chancellor's Recognition Award, 2015 CU Boulder College of Engineering Outstanding Graduate for Academic Achievement Award, and 2015 CU Boulder Electrical Engineering Distinguished Senior Award.
By enabling the integration of millions of micro-scale optical components on compact millimeter-scale computer chips, silicon photonics is positioned to enable next-generation optical technologies that facilitate revolutionary advances in numerous fields spanning science and engineering. In this talk, I will highlight our work on developing novel silicon-photonics-based platforms, devices, and systems that enable innovative solutions to high-impact problems in areas including augmented-reality displays, LiDAR sensing for autonomous vehicles, free-space optical communications, quantum engineering, and biophotonics.
Bruce Cameron is the Director of the System Architecture Group at MIT. His research interests include technology strategy, system architecture, and the management of product platforms. Previously, Dr. Cameron ran the MIT Commonality study, a 30-firm investigation of platforming returns, which concluded that firms face systemic downward pressure on commonality, partially resulting from challenges capturing the costs of variety. Dr. Cameron has supervised over 50 graduate students and has directed research projects for Amazon, BP, Sikorsky, Nokia, Caterpillar, AMGEN, Verizon, and NASA. Current research efforts include:
Dr. Cameron is a co-founder of Technology Strategy Partners, a consultancy created to help firms to restructure product development organizations, build systems engineering functions, and identify new architectures. Dr. Cameron has led projects in Fortune 500 firms in high tech, medical devices, transportation, and consumer goods.
The global market for SatCom is about to be flooded with supply from four new providers. The four major LEO Mega-Networks (SpaceX, OneWeb, Amazon, Telesat) have proposed thousands of satellites, but their network performance and capability are yet to be demonstrated. We review an apple-to-apples comparison of the four for total capacity and discuss an outlook for this market and emerging technology.
Paul Serra is a research scientist at the Space Telecommunications, Astronomy, and Radiation Laboratory at MIT and is working with Prof. Kerri Cahoy on the Cubesat Laser Infrared CrosslinK (CLICK) mission. His research includes the design, fabrication, and on-orbit characterization of timing instruments for compact spacecraft. Paul earned his Ph.D. in aerospace engineering at the University of Florida in 2018 on timing systems for CubeSats. He was a major contributor to the design of the instrument of the CubeSat Handling Of Multisystem Precision Time Transfer (CHOMPTT) mission, under the supervision of Prof. John Conklin. He received a MSc in aerospace engineering form University of Florida and a Graduate Engineering Degree from Arts et Métiers ParisTech, in France, in 2014.
Nanosatellites and CubeSats have drastically reduced the cost to access space and allowed several actors to launch entire fleets of satellites in a short span of time. Communications remain a challenge in terms of miniaturization and throughput, but also for regulatory and spectrum assignment reasons. Optical communication is a rapidly growing and maturing field that can deliver orders of magnitudes better data rate and Size, Weight, and Power (SWaP). For those reasons, optical communications are now the backbone of all major new constellation projects, both from private and government organizations. On top of raw numbers advantages, laser communication can greatly enhance RF-based navigation or time transfer methods, with position accuracy in the millimeter range.
The MIT Space Telecommunications, Astronomy and Radiation Laboratory (STAR Lab) has developed, in collaboration with the University of Florida (UF), and the NASA Ames Research Center, a series of lasercom payloads, as part of the CubeSat Laser Infrared CrosslinK (CLICK) mission. The CLICK payloads employ technologies such as Micro-Electro-Mechanical System (MEMS) Fast Steering Mirror (FSM) and Chip-Scale Atomic Clocks (CSAC) to demonstrate robust optical communication in a less than 10 x 10 x 15 cm volume. The first satellite, CLICK-A, has been launched and is undergoing commissioning. CLICK-A can downlink data at 50 Mbps to a small portable ground station. The second flight, CLICK-BC, will demonstrate a crosslink between two cubesats, and feature enhanced navigation and ranging capabilities. CLICK-BC is expected to launch in Fall 2023. I will discuss the CLICK mission and laser communication, as well as future space optical navigation systems.
Fan Wang is a neuroscientist and professor in the MIT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. She is an investigator at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research. Wang is known for her work identifying neural circuits underlying touch, pain, and anesthesia; and the development of a technique for capturing activated neuronal ensembles (CANE) to label and manipulate neurons activated by stimuli or behavioral paradigms.
Wang received her PhD in 1998 from Columbia University. Her thesis, titled Molecular genetic analysis of the olfactory sensory projections, was advised by Richard Axel. She did postdoctoral research with Marc Tessier-Lavigne at Stanford University before joining the faculty at Duke University School of Medicine in 2003 with appointments in neurobiology and cell biology. She was promoted to associate professor in 2013 and full professor in 2017. Wang was named Morris N. Broad Distinguished Professor of Neurobiology in 2018. In 2021, Wang joined the faculty at MIT as a professor in the department of brain and cognitive sciences and investigator at the McGovern Institute for Brain Research, maintaining an affiliation with the Duke Regeneration Center and adjunct professorship in neurobiology at Duke.
International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) defines “pain” as “an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with, or resembling that associated with, actual or potential tissue damage”. The emotions elicited by pain are strongly coupled with autonomic responses that often feeds back to further enhance pain perception. Indeed, the sensory pathways that detect and transmit painful stimuli (i.e the nociceptive system) functionally intersect with the autonomic system at multiple subcortical and spinal levels. Nociceptive stimuli can directly evoke activity of the sympathetic system through spinal circuits, inducing changes in blood pressure and local blood flow before the occurrence of conscious perception of pain. Persistent sympathetic activation can increase electromyographic activity in back and neck muscles thereby generating painful spasms. On the other hand, attention, anticipation, cognitive appraisal can either elevate or dampen the autonomic responses to noxious stimulation through top-down controls. Many brain regions involved in pain perception, such as the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), the insular cortex, amygdala, and periaqueductal gray (PAG), also regulate autonomic system activity. There is growing interest in mindfulness-based method to treat chronic pain. It has been suggested that mindfulness interventions relieve pain in part through modulating the balance of the autonomic system activities.
Hilda “Scooter” Holcombe, DVM, Ph.D., DACLAM, is the Associate Director of the Division of Comparative Medicine at MIT. She received her DVM and Ph.D. in immunology from NC State University College of Veterinary Medicine, followed by postdoctoral training at UCLA and Yale University. After 12 years in research focusing on mucosal immunology, Dr. Holcombe enrolled in the training program in Comparative Medicine at MIT and has since worked as a laboratory animal veterinarian in the US and England in academic and industry settings. She currently has clinical responsibilities for rodents at the Koch Institute, serves as a reviewer of animal care and use protocols, contributes to the didactic and research training of veterinary postdoctoral fellows, and performs independent and collaborative infectious disease research. Dr. Holcombe has trained in basic and advanced veterinary acupuncture and is dedicated to promoting its clinical applications in laboratory animal medicine. In addition, in collaboration with Dr. Fan Wang, she will develop animal models aimed at elucidating the mechanisms underlying acupuncture’s efficacy.
What’s the Point? How Modern Technological Advances Are Validating Acupuncture as a Viable Treatment Modality
The earliest acupuncturists identified acupoints and channels that, when stimulated, could be used to treat physiological imbalances in the body. Anatomical dissection demonstrated that these channels followed blood vessels and nerves and concluded that stimulation of specific points led to a return of balance in the body. Although not initially embraced by mainstream Western medicine, advances in neuroscience are beginning to lend credence to acupuncture as an effective method of neuromodulation that is useful for treating a growing number of neurological and systemic inflammatory conditions. Recent studies are providing scientific proof that acupoints signal through neurovascular pathways, and they are further defining their anatomical locations and the activation pathways involved. For example, specific receptors are located at some but not all acupoints, and, when stimulated, these points produce distinct and measurable physiological responses that some practitioners consider predictable based on Traditional Chinese Medicine. However, even though acupuncture has a rich 3000-year history, we are just beginning to understand the science behind its efficacy, and to realize that acupuncture does indeed assist in returning balance to the brain and body. Robust animal models are necessary to fully reveal acupuncture’s medical potential and facilitate its acceptance as a valid branch of medicine.
Pawan Sinha is a tenured professor of vision and computational neuroscience in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT. He received his undergraduate degree in computer science from the Indian Institute of Technology, New Delhi and his Masters and doctoral degrees in Artificial Intelligence from the Department of Computer Science at MIT. He has also had extended research stays at the University of California, Berkeley, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center, the Sarnoff Research Center in Princeton, and the Max-Planck Institute for Biological Cybernetics in Tübingen, Germany.
Prof. Sinha’s research interests span neuroscience, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and public health. Using a combination of experimental and computational modeling techniques, research in his laboratory focuses on understanding how the human brain learns to interpret and recognize complex sensory signals, such as images and videos. Prof. Sinha's experimental work on these issues involves studying healthy individuals and also those with neurological disorders such as autism. The goal is not only to derive clues regarding the nature and development of human visual skills, but also to create more powerful and robust AI systems.
Prof. Sinha founded Project Prakash in 2005 with the twin objectives of providing treatment to children with severe visual impairments and also understanding mechanisms of learning and plasticity in the brain. This project has provided insights into several fundamental questions about brain function (even some that had remained open for the past three centuries) while also transforming the lives of many blind children by bringing them the gift of sight.
Prof. Sinha is a recipient of the Pisart Vision Award from the Lighthouse Guild, the inaugural Asia Game Changers Award, the PECASE – US Government’s highest award for young scientists, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Fellowship in Neuroscience, the John Merck Scholars Award for research on developmental disorders, the Jeptha and Emily Wade Award for creative research, the Troland Award from the National Academies, the Distinguished Alumnus Award from IIT Delhi, and the Oberdorfer Award from the ARVO Foundation. His laboratory’s research has appeared in several leading scientific journals including Nature, Science, Nature Neuroscience, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and Proceedings of the Royal Society. This work has been profiled in several media channels including the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, New Yorker, ABC News, New Scientist, National Public Radio and TIME magazine.
Prof. Sinha’s teaching has consistently received high ratings from students. He has received the Dean’s Award for Advising and Teaching at MIT. To enhance scientific literacy on a broader scale, he has written a series of newspaper articles on various aspects of normal and abnormal brain function with the goal of bringing the latest findings in neuroscience to the attention of the general public.
Prof. Sinha has served on the program committees for prominent scientific conferences on object and face recognition and is currently a member of the editorial board of ACM's Journal of Applied Perception. He is a founder of Imagen Inc, a company that applies insights regarding human image processing to challenging real-world machine vision problems. Imagen was the winner of the MIT Entrepreneurship competition. Prof. Sinha was named a Global Indus Technovator and was also inducted into the Guinness Book of World Records for creating the world’s smallest reproduction of a printed book.
Expanding human knowledge can be tied intrinsically to the betterment of the human condition. As scientists, we hope to be able to merge our personal desire to be good Samaritans with our professional desire to be good researchers. This aspiration to braid science and service can only come to fruition, however, if we actively identify
opportunities that mesh the two—the kind of science that necessitates service. I shall describe an effort launched by my lab at MIT as an example of what such initiatives might look like. The genesis of this project lies in the confluence of a crucial humanitarian mission and a fundamental scientific quest.
India is home to the world’s largest population of blind children. The visual handicap, coupled with extreme poverty, greatly compromises the children’s quality of life, prospects for education, employment, and even basic survival. The humanitarian mission of Project Prakash is to bring light into the lives of curably blind children by providing them sight-restoring surgeries.
Embedded in this mission is an unprecedented opportunity to study one of the deepest scientific questions: How does the brain learn to extract meaning from sensory chaos? By following the development of visual skills in these unique children who are just setting out on the enterprise of learning how to see, we have gained insights into fundamental questions regarding visual learning and brain plasticity. Besides their intrinsic scientific value, these findings have also shaped our thinking in domains such as autism and artificial intelligence.
True to its name (Prakash in Sanskrit means light), the project has helped illuminate lives while also illuminating science. And it has demonstrated that the pursuit of knowledge can proceed hand in hand with the pursuit of compassion.
Jaspaul Singh is Co-Founder and CEO of Interon Laboratories, Inc., a preclinical stage biotechnology firm pioneering immunotherapy for brain disorders, beginning with Autism. Jaspaul previously managed hedge funds with a focus on healthcare and life sciences. From 2014 to 2020, Jaspaul Singh was the Founder, Managing Partner, and Portfolio Manager of Fort Warren Capital Management, a Boston-based hedge fund. Previously, Jaspaul was at Regiment Capital Advisors, a $5bln credit hedge fund that was spun out of Harvard Management Company. Jaspaul began his career as an Analyst in the Investment Banking Division of Goldman Sachs.
Jaspaul is a member of the National Board of Advisors of the Sikh Coalition, a civil rights advocacy group. He is also a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Jaspaul has an MBA from Harvard University, an MPHIL from the University of Cambridge (UK), and a BA with Honors from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a University Scholar.
Barbara Noro is a Principal Neuroscientist at Interon Laboratories, Inc., a preclinical stage biotechnology firm pioneering immunotherapy for brain disorders. Barbara received her PhD in Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics from Columbia University in the laboratory of Dr. Richard Mann, where she explored the molecular underpinnings that allow for the emergence of unique body plans in the animal kingdom. She then joined the laboratory of Professor Richard Axel at the Zuckerman Mind Brain Behavior Institute at Columbia University to unravel the neural mechanisms that underlie instincts. Barbara has further broadened her scientific expertise by working as an independent scientific consultant with principal investigators at several major US institutions. Barbara has also co-founded and worked for several groups to organize the response of the Columbia scientific community to the Covid pandemic, to enhance mentoring and scientific training for postdocs and students, to further gender equity and diversity, and to advocate for international trainees. She has been a collaborator in community engagement efforts to raise scientific awareness and to combine art and science.
Ashley A. Holmes, MS is a Senior Data Scientist at nQ Medical. In her role she works closely with the clinical team to conduct research into how motor and cognitive dysfunction due to neurodegenerative conditions can be detected through studying interactions between the fingers and personal devices like phones and computers. Her background is in mathematics and industrial/system engineering, and she has worked previously in process improvement to improvepatient safety at several local Boston hospitals as well as working on the research team at athenahealth.
Paul Le Floch is co-Founder & CEO of Axoft. He obtained his Ph.D. in Materials Sciences and Mechanical Engineering from Harvard University, where he focused on novel soft materials and structures for brain-electronics interface. Axoft spun out of his research and develops scalable Brain-Computer Interface for the treatment of chronic neurological disorders, and further our ability to communicate with the brain. He holds a Master of Science and Executive Engineering from Mines Paris and a Master of Science from ESPCI Paris. He was a Gold winner of the MRS Graduate Student Award and was named to Forbes 30 Under 30 in the Science category.
J. Troy Littleton, M.D., Ph.D., is the Menicon Professor of Neuroscience in the Departments of Biology and Brain and Cognitive Sciences and The Picower Institute for Learning and Memory at MIT. Dr. Littleton earned his M.D. and Ph.D. degrees in the Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) at Baylor College of Medicine with Hugo Bellen. After completing his M.D./Ph.D. studies, Dr. Littleton did postdoctoral work at the University of Wisconsin in Madison with Barry Ganetzky. Dr. Littleton moved to MIT in 2000, where his lab has been charactering how neuronal synapses form, function and undergo plasticity. In addition, Dr. Littleton has used the Drosophila model for the study of several neurological disorders, including epilepsy, Huntington’s Disease and autism. Dr. Littleton has received numerous awards for his research, including a Helen Hay Whitney Fellowship, a Searle Scholar Award, a Sloan Research Fellowship, a Human Frontiers Science Program Fellowship, the Poitras Scholar Award in Neuroscience and a Packard Foundation Fellowship for Science and Engineering. In addition, Dr. Littleton has served as a member of numerous NIH Study Sections and mentored more than 80 students and postdoctoral fellows during his career. Currently, Dr. Littleton serves as Director of MIT’s Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience Graduate Program.
Neurons communicate through the assembly of synaptic connections and the transmission of chemical signals across these junctions. We study how synaptic connections form and transmit signals between motoneurons and their muscle targets using the Drosophila model. Synaptic communication occurs along specialized regions of the presynaptic axon known as active zones, allowing synaptic vesicle fusion and neurotransmitter release to be aligned to postsynaptic receptors that sense and respond to these signals. We employ genetics, neuroimaging, and electrophysiology to define how synapses structurally and functionally mature, and how changes in these pathways contribute to synaptic diversity and plasticity. These studies provide insights into how synaptic strength develops across the cohort of synapses made by a single neuron, as well as how synaptic diversity can be more broadly controlled across different neuronal subclasses. Given defects in synapse formation and function contribute to a host of neurodevelopmental diseases, and loss of synapses is a major feature of neurodegenerative disorders like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, our work provides insights into how disruption of specific molecular components of the synapse alter neuronal wiring and synaptic communication.
David Goldston became Director of the MIT Washington Office in May 2017. The Washington Office is MIT’s “embassy,” providing policymakers with information and positions from MIT, and keeping the campus abreast of relevant developments in the nation's capital. As director, Goldston helps shape MIT’s policy and positions, and its communications regarding federal matters.
Prior to coming to MIT, Goldston was Director of Government Affairs at the Natural Resources Defense Council, a leading environmental group for eight years, where he helped shape NRDC’s federal political strategy, policies, and communications. Before his time at the NRDC he spent more than 20 years on Capitol Hill, working primarily on science and environmental policy, including serving as Chief of Staff of the House Committee on Science from 2001 through 2006.
After retiring from government service, Goldston was a visiting lecturer at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and at Harvard University Center for the Environment. He is currently an adjunct professor at Georgetown University. From 2007 through November 2009, he wrote a monthly column for Nature on science policy titled, “Party of One.” Goldston also was the project director for the Bipartisan Policy Center report: “Improving the Use of Science in Regulatory Policy,” which was released in August 2009. He authored a chapter in The Science of Science Policy: A Handbook (Stanford University Press, 2011). He is a member of the advisory committee for the National Academies’ Climate Communications Initiative, and has served on numerous panels of the Academy and other science policy organizations. He holds a B.A. (1978) from Cornell University and completed the course work for a Ph.D. in American history at the University of Pennsylvania.
The Washington Office is MIT’s “embassy,” providing policymakers with information and positions from MIT, and keeping the campus abreast of relevant developments in the nation's capital. David Goldston will share his insights on federal research priorities and the impact of key legislation.
Dr. Fazio is a Ventures Officer with the MIT Lincoln Laboratory Technology Ventures Office, which supports access to and development of commercial technologies relevant to national security. She has worked in technology commercialization for over a decade, including as a tech scout for the venture firm Allied Minds and as a licensing officer at Columbia Technology Ventures. Dr. Fazio holds a BS in physics from MIT and a Ph.D. in materials science from Columbia University, and is a veteran of the US Marine Corps.
MIT Lincoln Laboratory researches and develops advanced technologies to meet critical national security needs. Since its establishment in 1951 as a federally funded R&D center, Lincoln Laboratory researchers have contributed to the pioneering use of computers for data analysis; fabricated the ground and space terminals that enabled the world's fastest data download from a NASA satellite orbiting the moon; created the first dual-band radar that is also the highest-resolution, long-range imaging sensor in the world; and built a beam-combining laser that achieved the highest brightness recorded anywhere.
MIT Lincoln Laboratory places a unique emphasis on building operational prototypes of designed systems. Its ability to turn concepts into field-worthy systems is supported by state-of-the-art facilities, such as a world-class semiconductor research and fabrication laboratory, an autonomous systems development facility, and New England’s fastest, most powerful supercomputing center.
Key to Lincoln Laboratory's mission as a federally funded research and development center is the transfer of its technology, as it collaborates closely with small businesses and industry partners to develop technologies that meet identified needs for both national security and civilian purposes. By harnessing the strengths of each partner, these partnerships enable innovative technology to benefit the world.
Sertac Karaman is an Associate Professor of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (since Fall 2012). He is the Director of the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS) - interdepartmental research center committed to advancing research and education in the analytical information and decision sciences. He has obtained B.S. degrees in mechanical engineering and in computer engineering from the Istanbul Technical University, Turkey, in 2007; an S.M. degree in mechanical engineering from MIT in 2009; and a Ph.D. degree in electrical engineering and computer science also from MIT in 2012. His research interests lie in the broad areas of robotics and control theory. In particular, he studies the applications of probability theory, stochastic processes, stochastic geometry, formal methods, and optimization for the design and analysis of high-performance cyber-physical systems. The application areas of his research include driverless cars, unmanned aerial vehicles, distributed aerial surveillance systems, air traffic control, certification and verification of control systems software, and many others. He delivered the the Robotics: Science and Systems Early Career Spotlight Talk in 2017. He is the recipient of an Amazon Faculty Award in 2020, IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Early Career Award in 2017, an Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award in 2017, Army Research Office Young Investigator Award in 2015, National Science Foundation Faculty Career Development (CAREER) Award in 2014, AIAA Wright Brothers Graduate Award in 2012, and an NVIDIA Fellowship in 2011. He serves as the technical area chair for the Transactions on Aerospace Electronic Systems for the robotics area, a co-chair of the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society Technical Committee of Algorithms for the Planning and Control of Robot Motion. He serves on the Robotics: Science and Systems (RSS) Foundation Board and acts as the Secretary of the RSS Foundation. He is also co-founder of Optimus Ride, a Boston-based MIT-spinoff startup company that is developing self-driving vehicle technologies to enable accessible, equitable, safe and sustainable mobility for all.
The Laboratory for Inference and Decision Systems (LIDS) is the longest continuously-operating laboratory at MIT, founded in 1940. Throughout its history, LIDS has been at the forefront of major methodological developments and cutting-edge applications in a wide range of industries, including: telecommunications, information technology, automotive, energy, defense, and health. Building on past innovation and bolstered by a collaborative atmosphere, LIDS members continue to make breakthroughs that cut across traditional boundaries. Today, LIDS is a vibrant center that is home to 35 principle investigators and more than 200 researchers. Its focus spans foundations and applications of machine learning, analytics, inference, prediction and automated decision making.
Yossi Sheffi is an expert in systems optimization, risk analysis and supply chain management. He is author of a text book and seven award-winning management books. His latest books are: “The New Abnormal: Reshaping Business and Supply Chain Strategy Beyond Covid-19,” (October 1, 2020) and “A Shot in the Arm: How Science, Technology and Supply Chains Converged to Vaccinate the World (October 2021).
Under his leadership, MIT CTL has launched many educational, research, and industry/government outreach programs, including the MIT SCALE network involving six academic centers round the world. In 2015, CTL has launched the on-line Micromaster’s program, enrolling over 480,000 students in 196 countries.
Outside the institute, Dr. Sheffi has consulted with numerous organizations. He has also founded or co-founded five successful companies, all acquired later by large enterprises.
Dr. Sheffi has been recognized in numerous ways in academic and industry forums and won dozens of awards.
He obtained his B.Sc from the Technion in Israel in 1975, and SM and Ph.D. from MIT in 1978.
For more information visit: http://sheffi.mit.edu/
Based on studies of how businesses grappled with the chaos of the pandemic, Sheffi will explore the critical factors determining how businesses survive and thrive in the New (Ab)Normal. The advance of technology is accelerating, and it's a trend that can level the playing field between small and large companies. Nimble small businesses are using a growing array of off-the-shelf cloud computing and mobile apps to deploy sophisticated technologies in their supply chains and customer interfaces. Flexibility and agility are vital to managing chaos and pivoting toward a changed future. While many supply chains have been strained to a breaking point by the crisis, other enterprises rose to the occasion to create supply chains that delivered despite unprecedented disruptions. This phenomenon confirms what supply chain professionals always knew: that to continue to deliver the world’s goods all the operational pieces involved have to be connected and synchronized. Disruptions represent an unparalleled opportunity for supply chains to serve humanity as the world plots a new future.
Dr. Caplice serves as the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Center for Transportation & Logistics (CTL) where he is responsible for the planning and management of the research, education, and corporate outreach programs for the center. He created and currently serves as Director of the MITx MicroMaster’s Program in Supply Chain Management – the very first MicroMasters credential ever offered. Since its inception in 2015, over 1 million courses have been registered and more than 4,000 MicroMasters credentials have been awarded. In 2018, he was awarded the MITx Prize for Teaching and Learning, the Irwin Sizer Award for the Most Significant Improvement to MIT Education, and the MIT Teaching with Digital Technology Award.
He is also the founder and co-director of the MIT FreightLab – a research initiative that focuses on improving the way freight transportation is designed, procured, and managed. His primary research is in all aspects of freight transportation to include combinatorial procurement auctions, robust planning, portfolio management, performance metrics, and infrastructure design.
In addition to his work at MIT, Dr. Caplice is currently the Chief Scientist for DAT Freight & Analytics, the largest truckload freight marketplace in North America with over $135 billion in market transactions. In this role, he pioneered the concept of freight rate modeling that became Chainalytics Freight Market Intelligence Consortium (FMIC) and is now part of DAT. He leads the development and deployment of innovations and insights into the transportation industry to include the monthly FMIC Pulse Signal Report and the bi-weekly Freightvine Podcasts.
Prior to joining MIT, Dr. Caplice held senior management positions in supply chain consulting, product development, and professional services at several companies to include Logistics.com, SABRE, and PTCG. As part of PTCG/SABRE, he led the team that pioneered the concept and use of optimization-based procurement throughout the transportation industry.
Chris received a Ph.D. from MIT in 1996 in Transportation and Logistics Systems. His dissertation on Optimization Based Bidding for Transportation was selected as the winner of the Council of Logistics Management (CLM) Doctoral Dissertation Award and received an Honorable Mention in the 1996 Dissertation Award sponsored by the Transportation Science Section of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS).
Prior to receiving his PhD, Dr. Caplice taught at the Virginia Military Institute for two years and served five years in the Army Corps of Engineers, achieving the rank of Captain. His writing has appeared in numerous academic and business journals and publications. In addition to his PhD, he earned a Master of Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin and a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from the Virginia Military Institute (VMI).
We are living in an age of constant change. On a daily basis we are faced with an onslaught of new potential technologies, emerging disruptive social trends, constantly shifting economic and political landscapes, etc. These trends are exacerbated by the increasing complexity and connectiveness of products. Managers, supply chain executives in particular, need to be able to see through this uncertainty to ensure success for their organization. Interestingly, today is not unique. Supply chain managers have been navigating uncertain futures since time immemorial. Luckily, today we have tools to help us see through the fog and better prepare. This talk will explore why we all have such a difficult time predicting and planning for the future through examples both historical and current. We will develop and discuss some tools and techniques that can be used to better prepare organizations for a future that is always changing and unpredictable.
Dr. Milena Janjevic is a Research Scientist at the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics. Her current research focuses on the design of supply chain networks. Her work, performed in collaboration with multiple global organizations, focused on improving decision-making in supply chain design through the use of data-driven optimization and simulation models and their integration into interactive visual tools. In addition, her research focuses specifically on distribution network design in the context of urban logistics and last-mile delivery, urban freight policy, and infrastructure design.
Dr. Janjevic received her Ph.D. and Masters in Engineering with specializations in Logistics at Université libre de Bruxelles in Belgium. During her Ph.D., she was a Visiting Scholar at the Center of Excellence for Sustainable Urban Freight Systems at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. Her doctoral studies focused on the optimal design of urban logistics systems based on multi-tier distribution networks, electric vehicles, and policy measures. Dr. Janjevic's previous professional work includes working with McKinsey & Company in Belgium and France on various projects in the telecommunication, insurance, and retail sectors.
Dr. Janjevic recently published academic papers in the European Journal of Operational Research, Transportation Research Part A, Transportation Research Part D, Transportation Research Part E, and Environmental Science & Policy. She is also a lecturer at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (United States) and an invited lecturer at Mines ParisTech (France), NEOMA Business School (France), and Université libre de Bruxelles (Belgium).
Supply chain design is the pillar of strategic supply chain planning and a key source of value creation for organizations. As supply chains become more global and focused on the end customer, the design of supply chains plays an increasingly important role as a competitive differentiator. The MIT CTL Supply Chain Design Initiative conducts innovative research to help organizations adopt new supply chain design paradigms and align their supply chains with the requirements and challenges of today’s markets. In collaboration with the MIT CTL Computational and Visual Education (CAVE) Lab, they employ and develop visual analytics decision-support tools, that enable intuitive interaction with quantitative methods. In this presentation, we will demonstrate how these tools can support the decision-making process around supply chain design, enable cross-functional collaboration within organizations and align supply chain design with wider organizational priorities. We will illustrate these concepts through several case studies from real-world implementation of such tools.
Jarrod Goentzel is Founder and Director of the MIT Humanitarian Supply Chain Lab and Principal Research Scientist in the MIT Center for Transportation & Logistics. His research focuses on meeting human needs in resource-constrained settings through better supply chain management, information systems, and decision support technology. Dr. Goentzel leads fieldwork in a range of contexts to develop insights that improve response efforts during emergencies and strengthen supply chains in vulnerable communities. Research involves direct engagement with the private sector, government agencies, humanitarian, international development, and community organizations on several continents. Dr. Goentzel has created residential and online courses in humanitarian logistics, international operations, and supply chain finance, and has extensive experience using simulation games to build intuition and leadership skills. Previously, Dr. Goentzel was Executive Director of the MIT Supply Chain Management (SCM) Program, a nine-month master’s degree program. He joined MIT in 2003 to establish the Zaragoza Logistics Center in Spain, which was the first node in the MIT Global SCALE Network. He received a Ph.D. from the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Supply chains were in the spotlight throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, but they have always been vital in responding to humanitarian crises. Over the past two decades, focus on supply chain innovation and professionalization has improved humanitarian response. This talk draws on examples of direct action by the MIT Humanitarian Supply Chain Lab to illustrate how supply chain innovation improves aid delivery and facilitates market recovery to more effectively meet human needs during crisis.
Roberto Rigobon is the Society of Sloan Fellows Professor of Management and a Professor of Applied Economics at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
He is also a research associate of the National Bureau of Economic Research, a member of the Census Bureau’s Scientific Advisory Committee, and a visiting professor at IESA.
Roberto is a Venezuelan economist whose areas of research are international economics, monetary economics, and development economics. Roberto focuses on the causes of balance-of-payments crises, financial crises, and the propagation of them across countries—the phenomenon that has been identified in the literature as contagion. Currently he studies properties of international pricing practices, trying to produce alternative measures of inflation. He is one of the two founding members of the Billion Prices Project, and a co-founder of PriceStats.
Roberto joined the business school in 1997 and has won both the "Teacher of the Year" award and the "Excellence in Teaching" award at MIT three times.
He received his PhD in economics from MIT in 1997, an MBA from IESA (Venezuela) in 1991, and his BS in Electrical Engineer from Universidad Simon Bolivar (Venezuela) in 1984. He is married with three kids.
Almost every firm that is targeting becoming net zero emissions in a decade or two will need to rely on two tools: one is the reduction in their own emissions, and in the sequestration of co2. The voluntary carbon markets has been the mechanism it has been chosen to achieve those carbon credits. However, there are many flaws that lagged the carbon credits. In this talk I would argue that the approach has been incorrect, which has led to many undesirable outcomes. In propose mechanisms to achieve a well functioning market.
Josué C. Velázquez Martínez is a Research Scientist, and Lecturer at the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics specialized in Logistics and Supply Chain Management in transportation, manufacturing, and retail industries, and has more than 10 years of experience in conducting applied research on logistics sustainability and small firms in emerging markets. He serves as the director of the MIT Sustainable Supply Chain (SSC) Lab a research group focused on collaborating with organizations to improve their supply chain and logistics operations by considering environmental, social and business goals. Velázquez Martínez is also de director of MIT Low Income Firms Transformation (LIFT) lab, a new research initiative aimed at alleviating poverty in Latin America and lifting the life of the bottom billion. The lab focuses on developing innovative research and technology for micro and small enterprises to foster growth by improving their supply chain management capabilities.
Velázquez Martínez has published a variety of academic and business-oriented articles and book chapters on logistics sustainability and supply chain management, and has been constantly quoted and interviewed by different international media, including HuffPost, CNN, The Washington Post, Bloomberg, NY Times, and ELLE.com. Velázquez Martínez is the lecturer at MIT of the graduate course SCM.290 Sustainable Supply Chain Management, and is a frequent guest speaker in conferences and academic seminars in Europe, Asia, the United States, and Latin America.
Velázquez Martínez holds an MSc in Manufacturing Systems with focus on Optimization and a PhD in Industrial Engineering with focus on Sustainability in Supply Chains from Monterrey Tech, Mexico, where he was approved with great distinction from both programs. Dr. Velázquez Martínez is also the 2014 recipient of the Doctoral Dissertation Award issued by the Mexican Logistics and Supply Chain Association as recognition for the best doctoral thesis in the country.
In 2013, Dr. Velázquez Martínez was a Postdoctoral Researcher at Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands, and he also was part of the first class in the STVP – Faculty Fellows Program at Stanford University. Prior to joining MIT, in 2014, Dr. Velázquez Martínez was the Dean of the Engineering School at Monterrey Tech in Santa Fe.
For the past years, many companies have established ambitious carbon goals for the next 10, 20, 30 and 40 years. While many of them have in fact started their sustainability journey, unfortunately, the common implemented estimations tend to be designed to only inform about the carbon footprint at the corporate level, and they systematically lack of critical information that allows companies design actionable strategies. In this presentation, I will discuss about these challenges, and provide managerial insights into translating accurate estimations of carbon emissions, into actionable strategies reflected in supply chain management and logistics decisions. I will finalize my presentation by illustrating some applied research projects conducted at the MIT Sustainable SC Lab.
AJ (Alfonso A) Perez is an MIT alum and a professional founder. AJ serves as the President of Grow Clean which is an Organic farmland business designed to ensure the supply of healthy Organic food and strong financial returns. AJ also serves as both an ESG and deep tech advisor to family offices and institutional investors. In 2018, AJ co-founded IndustrialML, an MIT enterprise machine learning software spin-out optimizing efficiency of industrial manufacturers and enabling real-time workforce education, where he served on the Board of Directors.
AJ was previously Chairman, CEO, and Founder of New Valence Robotics Corporation (NVBOTS.com), an MIT 3D printing spin-off which invented automated 3D printing, cloud 3D printing, and high speed multi-metal 3D printing. In early 2017, NVBOTS spun off and re-branded a portion of it’s metal 3D printing business unit as Digital Alloys (Series A by Khosla, Series B by G20, Boeing, and Lincoln Electric). In late 2017, NVBOTS was acquired by Cincinnati Incorporated, where AJ served as General Manager until his return to MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering as a Presidential Fellow.
AJ holds a BS '13 in Mechanical Engineering and Masters of Engineering in Advanced Manufacturing '14 from MIT. His academic interests, lectures, and research include 3D printing, mechanical design, manufacturing processes automation, robotics, medical devices, construction, entrepreneurship, and sustainability. AJ has developed and taught several courses during his career, including the first graduate level 3D printing / additive manufacturing course for the department of Mechanical Engineering at MIT. Most recently, AJ worked with MIT Sloan Sustainability Initiative’s Jason Jay to teach an MBA course called ‘Innovating for Impact’ and run a series of sustainability workshops in collaboration with MIT’s Trust Center for Entrepreneurship and Harvard Kennedy School’s Social Innovation and Change Initiative.
AJ was the final Lemelson-MIT Inventor Fellow, was selected as one of Boston Globe’s 25 under 25, and won the Lemelson-MIT “use it” student prize. AJ is the primary inventor of 30+ inventions in the fields of additive manufacturing, mobile manufacturing, industrial IoT, machine learning, computer vision, medical devices, and construction. AJ seeks leadership and investment opportunities that leverage his MIT engineering background, intellectual property expertise, management experience, international network of trusted investors, and sustainability focused mindset.
Traditional design thinking, design processes, and optimization constraints collectively yielded the status quo. The externalities brought on by these status quo 'solutions' got us into the mess we are all now experiencing. More of the status quo is not the ESG solution nor will status quo design thinking yield future solutions that the world needs. We must collectively challenge and reject the false dichotomy promulgated by 'status quo business leaders' that to be more sustainable means to be less profitable.
If we want to meaningfully move the needle on pollution, waste, climate, and equity etc. we must challenge ourselves to think and innovate differently than ever before. This talk aims to introduce the audience to the Design for Sustainability toolbox through both a technical discussion and a series of thought provoking case studies ranging from research in MIT labs to mass production at commercial scale.
Professor John E. Fernández is Director of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Environmental Solutions Initiative, enlisting the capacity of the MIT community in the transition to a net zero carbon, biodiverse and equitable future. He is a professor in the Department of Architecture at MIT, affiliated with the Department of Urban Studies and Planning and a practicing architect. Fernández founded and directs the MIT Urban Metabolism Group and is a member of the World Economic Forum Global Commission on BiodiverCities by 2030, the Urban Climate Change Research Network and the Leadership Team of Oceanvisions. He has published on a wide range of subjects from sustainable cities, urban biodiversity, design and more and is author of two books, numerous articles in scientific and design journals including Science, the Journal of Industrial Ecology, Building and Environment, Energy Policy and others, and author of nine book chapters. He is formerly Chair of Sustainable Urban Systems for the International Society of Industrial Ecology and Director of the MIT Building Technology Program from 2010 to 2015.
As we head toward exceeding 1.5 degrees C of average global warming within a few years, serious efforts to achieve real sustainability are emerging. Industry and business are now broadly aware of the mounting climate loss and damage, as well as the novel opportunities brought about by the Anthropocene. To some, the present reality of environmental apocalypse and unprecedented resource disruption suggest an inevitable existential threat to humans. Prof. Fernandez believes otherwise - that something more subtle and promising is arising from the call to reconsider the ways in which we satisfy our needs while not compromising the ability of future generations to satisfy theirs. In his position as director of the MIT Environmental Solutions Initiative, Fernandez has worked with dozens of companies on the question of what comes next, and especially how business can be positioned both for prosperity and planetary health. The circular economy, AI, carbon management, climate actions coupled to biodiversity loss reduction, close collaboration with researchers and more, are strategies that Fernandez will discuss.
The MIT.nano Immersion Lab, MIT’s first open-access facility for augmented and virtual reality (AR/VR) and interacting with data, is available to MIT students, faculty, researchers, and external users. The Lab is already supporting cross-disciplinary research at MIT, working with multiple MIT groups for diverse uses — quantitative geometry measurements of physical prototypes for advanced manufacturing, motion analysis of humans for health and wellness uses, creation of animated characters for arts and theater production, virtual tours of physical spaces, and visualization of fluid and heat flow for architectural design, to name a few. Dr. Anthony, the Faculty Lead for the Immersion Lab, will talk about the variety of projects the lab has and is supporting and the insight that has provided into future potential applications of this technology.
Steve Suarez is the Global Head of Innovation, Global Functions at HSBC, leading an innovation ecosystem to shape and deliver better ways of serving our customers through innovative solutions.
Steve is an accomplished transformation expert with
30 years of experience in consulting, telecommunications and financial services, guiding geographically diverse teams and driving large scale complex strategic initiatives across multiple organisations.
Steve establishes strong connections with executive stakeholders and corporate partners alike sharing his expertise through multiple channels including non-executive board participation and keynote engagements. His passion for innovation and the growth mind-set drives his continuous learning, the most recent of which is the Innovation and Leadership program at MIT where he has become an MIT Sloan Alumnus.
The Metaverse is a seamless convergence of our physical and digital lives. At HSBC, we are exploring how this will open up new ways to engage with consumers, access new customer groups and allow development of new business models with potential revenue streams.
Dr. Anu Agarwal is a Principal Research Scientist at MIT, developing Si-CMOS compatible materials for integrated photonic devices in the mid-IR regime. She is an Optica Fellow (2022), has over 250 journal and refereed conference publications, 17 awarded patents, and 4 pending patents. She is director of electronic-photonic packaging at the MIT Microphotonics Center and leads the Lab for Education and Application Prototypes (LEAP) at MIT.nano within the Initiative for Knowledge and Initiative in Manufacturing (IKIM). Through this LEAP initiative her team has built hybrid advanced manufacturing skills training programs to bridge the Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities gap in STEM across the workforce supply chain from K-12 to PhD.
As part of the MA Network of Laboratories for Education and Application Prototypes (LEAPs), the MIT LEAP within the Initiative for Knowledge and Innovation in Manufacturing (IKIM) launched in 2017, focused on teaching integrated photonics practice and engagement with startups and SMEs in the form of training, certification, and tool access. The IKIM uses interactive data visualization, VR tool-training simulations, and educational games that use novel game-based learning environments to build knowledge and intuition. In particular, virtual reality sims have been integrated in its hand-on photonics education, employed as part of bootcamps, courses, and workshops to enhance tool use training. Specific examples such as the pick-and-place die bonder tool will be reviewed.
Valentin Heun is a VP of Innovation Engineering at PTC, leading the PTC Reality Lab. His work focuses on metaverse technologies. Valentin created the first industrial AR and spatial computing platform, cofounded a robotic & CAD UI-devices company and led the reality editor project at the MIT Media Lab. Valentin’s award-winning works are published in Forbes, Fast Company, Wired, and in academic conferences such as UbiComp, UIST, SIGGRAPH, and CHI. Valentin holds a Ph.D. in Media Arts and Science from the MIT Media Lab.
At the PTC Reality Lab, we drive digital transformation and innovation, helping industrial companies to defend or advance their competitive advantage. Hundreds of companies visit our corporate experience center each year to explore how cutting-edge augmented reality, IIoT, CAD, and PLM technologies can drive digital transformation for their businesses.
Dexter Ang is the CEO and Cofounder of Pison. Ang’s responsibilities include defining company vision, growing the team, and business development with consumer electronics and militaryclients. Ang is the lead for engagements with Bose, Microsoft, Google, Boeing, and the ALS Association and is a SME for Human Factors for the Augmented Reality Enterprise Alliance (AREA). Drawing on his expertise in HCI and mechanical engineering, Ang led Pison’s development of its patented nerve-sensing ENG technology and integration for disruptive capabilities. Prior to founding Pison, Ang worked as a senior trader specializing in signal processing and low latency communication at Jump Trading—a market leader in high frequencytrading. During his eight-year tenure there Ang led a $40million PnL.
Pison designs neural-based semiconductor chips for smartwatches and wearable gesture control bands for seamless interaction of digital and physical applications. Sensor fusion of patented electroneurography (ENG), haptics, and movement sensors provide a rich modality for the lifestyle metaverse and national security markets.
The Honorable Dr. Will Roper is currently a Distinguished Professor at Georgia Tech's Sam Nunn School of International Affairs, focusing on technology impacting national security. He is a board member and advisor of numerous startups and investment firms, a Senior Advisor at McKinsey, and Honorary Group Captain in the U.K. Royal Air Force.
Dr. Roper previously served as Assistant Secretary of the U.S. Air Force, leading over $60 billion of annual technology development and operations for the U.S. Air Force (USAF) and Space Force (USSF). He was a recognized change agent for disruptive innovation, including the U.S. military's first uses of agile software development, digital engineering, venture investments, electric aircraft, artificial intelligence, hypersonic weapons, and swarming systems. Prior to this, he founded the Pentagon’s Strategic Capabilities Office, growing this once-classified innovation office to $1.6 billion annually, after beginning his career at MIT Lincoln Laboratory as the Missile Defense Agency's chief futurist.
During his fifteen years of national security service, Dr. Roper received the Pentagon’s and Air Force's highest awards for public service. His publications in Wired, Popular Mechanics, CBS's 60 Minutes, and the USAF/USSF's There is No Spoon continue to drive thinking on technology and national security. He holds a bachelor’s and master’s in physics from Georgia Tech and doctorate in mathematics from Oxford University, where he studied string theory as a Rhodes Scholar.
Dr. Will Roper heralded the need for disruptive agility and led the transformation within the Department of Defense in using digital engineering to modernize the military acquisition process. His vision is captured in a paper he released in October 2020 called “There is No Spoon: The New Digital Acquisition Reality” in which he uses references from the movie “The Matrix” to explain his concept. Dr. Roper will discuss his vision and the ever increasing need for connectivity in the future of digital engineering.
Pattie Maes is a professor in MIT's Program in Media Arts and Sciences. She runs the Media Lab's Fluid Interfaces research group, which aims to radically reinvent the human-machine experience. Coming from a background in artificial intelligence and human-computer interaction, she is particularly interested in the topic of cognitive enhancement, or how immersive and wearable systems can actively assist people with memory, attention, learning, decision making, communication, and wellbeing.
Maes is the editor of three books, and is an editorial board member and reviewer for numerous professional journals and conferences. She has received several awards: Fast Company named her one of 50 most influential designers (2011); Newsweek picked her as one of the "100 Americans to watch for" in the year 2000; TIME Digital selected her as a member of the “Cyber Elite,” the top 50 technological pioneers of the high-tech world; the World Economic Forum honored her with the title "Global Leader for Tomorrow"; Ars Electronica awarded her the 1995 World Wide Web category prize; and in 2000 she was recognized with the "Lifetime Achievement Award" by the Massachusetts Interactive Media Council. She has also received an honorary doctorate from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in Belgium, and her 2009 TED talk on "the 6th sense device" is among the most-watched TED talks ever.
In addition to her academic endeavors, Maes has been an active entrepreneur as co-founder of several venture-backed companies, including Firefly Networks (sold to Microsoft), Open Ratings (sold to Dun & Bradstreet) and Tulip Co (privately held). Prior to joining the Media Lab, Maes was a visiting professor and a research scientist at the MIT Artificial Intelligence Lab. She holds a bachelor's degree in computer science and a PhD in artificial intelligence from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in Belgium.
Recent advances in generative AI have enabled the creation of synthetic characters that not only look realistic, but can converse with people using natural language. Maes will discuss the applications for this technology in Business, Health, and Learning.
Dr. Jennifer Morris is a Principal Research Scientist at the MIT Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change and the MIT Energy Initiative. Much of her research focuses on energy transitions and economic development pathways as well as uncertainty and decision-making. Jennifer is a key contributor to the development of the MIT Integrated Global System Modeling(IGSM) framework, focusing on the human system component, the Economic Projection and Policy Analysis (EPPA) model. With this modeling framework, she develops integrated economic and climate scenarios, generates large ensembles, analyzes policy impacts, explores technology and mitigation pathways and transitions, and examines multi-sector dynamics. Her uncertainty-related work involves quantifying key uncertainties and applying different methodological approaches to models in order to formally represent such uncertainties and explore how they impact near-term decisions. A key focus is evaluating risks to different investment options in energy and water and identifying those that are robust to potential risks. Jennifer holds a PhD in Engineering Systems and a M.S. in Technology and Policy from MIT.
There is growing focus on stringent climate policy targets, such as net zero emissions by 2050 and climate stabilization at 1.5C or 2C. With that focus comes a long, and growing, list of questions. Some of these include: What does net zero emissions really mean? What’s the role of negative emissions technologies such as BECCS (bioenergy with carbon capture and storage)? What do energy transitions consistent with such targets look like? How can we account for key uncertainties? This talk will cover research designed to address these questions. A main focus will be on work employing a multi-sector coupled human-natural system model that captures uncertainties related to policy design and socioeconomic development to explore energy transitions and related regional and sectoral responses such as emissions, sectoral output, and consumption.
As the founder and CEO of Found Energy, Peter Godart is on a mission to address the climate crisis by turning waste materials into carbon-free, energy-dense replacements for fossil fuels. While working as a scientist at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Godart developed spacecraft that could consume their vestigial aluminum components for energy. Now through Found Energy, he is building on his Ph.D. and postdoctoral work at MIT to help humanity do the same.
As renewable energy becomes increasingly more affordable and integrated into electrical grids across the globe, one problem persists in our transition away from fossil fuels - the transportation and long-term storage of renewable energy. In the United States alone, over 13,000 TWh is transported each year as fossil-based energy carriers including petroleum and methane, and as we move away from these fuels, new technologies will need to be deployed to meet the increased demand for renewables far from their point of generation. Existing energy storage technologies like electrochemical and thermal batteries are critical for this transition, but due to their relatively low energy density, their use is limited to short-distance transportation and stationary applications (e.g. home and grid storage). Consequently, many potential energy markets (e.g. maritime shipping, industrial hydrogen, process heating, remote power generation) are left out of the renewable energy transition due to this technology gap in energy transportation - today’s primary storage and transmission solutions fail to compete with fossil fuels on energy density, cost, and safety. One approach to solving this challenge is to recognize that we are already transporting a substantial amount of energy around the world as the embodied energy of different materials - metals, organic materials, and plastics. Aluminum, for example, is the third most abundant element on Earth, has double the energy density of gasoline, and is easy and cheap to produce and ship. With the addition of a few key energy extraction technologies, we can turn the aluminum supply chain and others into vast energy transportation networks that can actually address the gaps that fossil fuels will leave behind.
Originally from the Dominican Republic, Andres is a ClimateTech entrepreneur working at the intersection of social impact and Climate Action. Andres holds a dual-major in Mechanical Engineering and Finance from Drexel University. Social and environmental impact has always been part of Andres' life endeavors. While in Philadelphia, he supported the community and empowered students and professionals by being part of LeBow BRIDGE Advisory Board and Prospanica Philadelphia Board. He worked at New Hudson Facades, a Related Companies subsidiary, in the development of three skyscrapers with a projects scope worth over USD$170 M at the iconic Hudson Yards in NYC. Since 2018, Andres has been leading SOS Carbon Inc. Sargassum Ocean Sequestration of Carbon (SOS Carbon) is a spinoff company from the Mechanical Engineering department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). SOS Carbon is focused on scaling its unique patented technologies to turn sargassum seaweed invasions problem into an economical natural Ocean carbon sequestering opportunity. As a member of MIT Sloan School of Management, Andres’ motivation is his capacity to transform society and the environment for a better tomorrow. SOS Carbon in committed to solving one of the Caribbean's most threatening problem, generate employment and value chains to the region, and fight climate change for a global impact.
The increasing effects of Climate Change continue to negatively impact the world and us all. In the Caribbean, massive Sargassum seaweed blooms washing up on the shores (in triple digit thousand tons) which are creating mortality zones for local marine ecosystems, releasing carbon and methane when decomposing, as well as creating a health and economic risk to these tourism-dependent economies. Invasive sargassum has cost the Caribbean more than $120 million a year, only in ineffective cleanup, and has led to a 30-35% drop in tourism during some seasons (hundreds of millions in more losses).
The Caribbean is the most tourism-dependent region on the planet where the industry provides over 15% of direct gross domestic product (GDP) and ~14% of direct jobs. In the smaller islands, e.g., U.S. Virgin Islands, travel and tourism’s GDP contributions are as high 70%. A collapse of the tourism industry would likely lead to mass migration and have serious consequences for the entire hemisphere.
SOS Carbon, Inc. (Sargassum Ocean Sequestration of Carbon) is a spinoff company from the Mechanical Engineering Department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). SOS Carbon is focused on scaling its unique patented technologies and systems to turn the sargassum invasion problem into economic, social, and environmental opportunities. The company’s current approach centers on scaling its technology that cost-efficiently harvest Sargassum directly from the sea while formally employing the local fishermen and community members. Environmental cleanup services are provided to the tourism sector who can’t have a sustainable tourism without pristine beaches. SOS Carbon then generates value chains by using the fresh sargassum as raw material for processing into value-add products through its key partners.
SOS Carbon other central technology is the Sargassum Ocean Sequestration of Carbon system, which pumps the seaweed to a critical depth of 300m after which it keeps sinking on its own. Below 1,000m, gases are trapped in the Ocean effectively sequestering the carbon. A further benefit is that sargassum can also absorb heavy metals in the Ocean that come from burning coal and these too then get sequestered. SOS Carbon has taken a serious problem and turned it in to a great opportunity. Since its origin, SOS Carbon has understood that tackling environmental crises has to be a joint effort between all stakeholders. SOS Carbon has been able to bring together leaders and changemakers from all sectors through the region: private, public, NGOs, academia.
Janelle Knox-Hayes is the Lister Brothers Associate Professor of Economic Geography and Planning in the Department of Urban Studies and Planning. She holds a visiting research fellowship at the Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment at Oxford University. Her research focuses on the ways in which social and environmental systems are governed under changing temporal and spatial scales as a consequence of globalization. She has studied the political and economic interface of financial markets and environmental systems and how individuals and organizations plan and make decisions under conditions of socio-economic uncertainty. Her latest project examines how social values shape sustainable development. Janelle has been the recipient of an SSRC Abe Fellowship for study of environmental finance in the Asia-Pacific and a Fulbright Fellowship for study of sustainable decision-making in Iceland. Janelle is the author of a number of peer-reviewed works in prestigious journals and presses. She serves as an editor of the Cambridge Journal of Regions, Economy and Society.
Prior to joining DUSP, Janelle was an associate professor in the School of Public Policy at Georgia Tech. She completed her BA (Summa Cum Laude) in International Affairs, Ecology, and Japanese Language and Civilizations from the University of Colorado Boulder in 2004 and her MSc (with Distinction) and DPhil from the University of Oxford in 2006 and 2009 respectively. Before starting graduate school, Janelle worked as an energy analyst for the United States Government Accountability Office. While in graduate school, she also worked as an energy analyst for New Energy Finance.
The global growth of wind energy markets offers opportunities to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. However, wind variability and intermittency (across multiple timescales) indicate that these energy resources must be carefully integrated into the power system to avoid mismatches with grid demand and associated grid reliability issues. At the same time, community concerns regarding the local installation of renewable energy and energy storage systems have already delayed or even halted the proposed projects. I review a broadly defined, co-design approach that considers wind energy from a full social, technical, economic, and political viewpoint. Such a co-design can address the coupled inter-related challenges of cost, technology readiness, system integration, and societal considerations of acceptance, adoption, and equity. Such a successful design depends on the understanding of the needs of relevant communities, the regional grid infrastructure and its demand variability, local and global grid decarbonization targets, available land and resources for system siting, policy and political constraints for energy development, and the projected regional and global impact of these systems on the environment, jobs, and communities.
The ILP is offering a unique opportunity to join one of four tours at MIT after the conference. Sign-up here for the tours.
Take a guided tour of our dynamic campus and experience firsthand how MIT is making a better world. From cutting edge research to innovation, from world-renowned architecture to rich community life, the MIT campus is a treasure to explore. MIT is also the heart of the vibrant innovation district of Kendall Square, the most innovative square mile in the world – come see how academics, entrepreneurs, corporations and non-profits make it all happen.
Set in the heart of campus, MIT.nano is the Institute’s new 200,000 sf center for nanoscience and nano engineering research. Take a behind the scenes tour of key research spaces, hear about the progress MIT.nano has made since its launch in 2018, and learn how this remarkable building is helping researchers from every corner of MIT explore the dawn of the Nano Age.
Participants will be introduced to provocative exhibitions on CRISPR and AI, the magical kinetic sculptures of Arthur Ganson and Andy Cavatora, and countless unexpected treasures from the museum collection of more than a million artifacts.
The Engine is a MIT founded VC and incubator for hard tech in areas including Climate Change, Human Health, Advanced Systems and more. The Engine invests broadly while maintaining an allegiance to its roots at MIT, Boston, and the greater New England region. It works with governments, corporations, and academic institutions on efforts that will make sure our economy is built to not just meet the challenges of the future, but to actually shape the future for the better.