IEEE Region 10 Directors’ Dialogue [Immediate Past, Present, Future]
Date & Time : Aug 8, 2020 | 3:00 PM – 4.45 PM Japan Standard Time
Organized by R10 Information Management Committee, R10 Newsletter Committee and IEEE Singapore office
Written by Ewell Tan, Project Manager, IEEE Asia-Pacific Ltd.
IEEE Region 10 (a.k.a. Asia-Pacific region) represents the largest region in IEEE with more than 135,000+ members. Recognizing the importance of our members and volunteers, which are the core foundation of IEEE, a webinar on IEEE R10 Directors’ Dialogue [Immediate Past, Present, Future] was organized in collaboration with R10 Information Management Committee, R10 Newsletter Committee and IEEE Singapore office on 8 August 2020, to provide a platform for members and non-members to have an interactive dialogue session with the IEEE and Region 10 leadership.
This webinar was proudly presented by IEEE President & CEO, Prof. Toshio Fukuda and IEEE Executive Director, Mr. Stephen Welby, as the Guest-of-Honour. Dr. Kurnianingsih, R10 Information Management Committee Chair, gave an opening introduction at a start of the webinar and highlighted the objective of this webinar is to bring our members closer together, encourage teamwork and inspire thinking to overcome obstacles and challenges amidst COVID-19. Next, we had our Guest-of-Honour, Prof. Toshio Fukuda and Mr. Stephen Welby inspired us with their welcoming message and honorable talks. Followed-by, three R10 Directors [Immediate Past, Present and Future] each gave a presentation on different insightful perspectives.
R10 Director, Prof. Akinori Nishihara gave a talk on “How IEEE Contributes to Society at Large and Communities during and after COVID-19”. Prof. Akinori shared his insightful view on IEEE value proposition, community structure and the relationship between IEEE entities.
R10 Director-Elect, Mr. Deepak Mathur addressed the future of IEEE, especially on membership recruitment, retention, and member engagement with his topic focus on “Building a better future post COVID-19: IEEE Region 10’s plan for members and volunteers.”
Thereafter, our R10 Immediate Past Director and VP of IEEE MGA, Prof. Kukjin Chun, delivered a talk on “What kind of leadership do we need for R10 in the new era post COVID-19?”. During the presentation, Prof. Kukjin highlighted that resilient leaders are essential to the organizations and he shared the key leadership skills, such as lead with empathetic, embrace and empowerment, that are required for future leaders.
An interactive Q&A session began after the three Directors’ presentation and was moderated by, Prof. Takako Hashimoto, the R10 Secretary. Participants were actively involved in the Q&A session and had their questions answered by our IEEE and R10 leaders.
The webinar was successfully concluded by R10 Newsletter Committee Chair, Dr. Mohammad Faizal Ahmad Fauzi. Dr. Faizal expressed his appreciation on behalf of the organizing committee and encourage participants to join the upcoming R10 events. In overall, this webinar provided an exciting opportunity for our members and non-members to interact and familiarize themselves with IEEE Region 10, with a key message to inspire transformation and motivate every one of us to emerge stronger after the global pandemic.
IEEE President & CEO, Prof. Toshio Fukuda
Q: How IEEE can help / train its members to prepare for future outbreaks in education/research/industry sectors?
A: IEEE has many activities for education, research and industry sectors. Please join them:
I initiated the IEEE Life Long Learning Education program this year. All members are invited to join this new program. For research sectors, there are a number of opportunities: Future Direction Committee, many technical committees, and TAB society/council activities as well as lots of journal and conference publications by PSPB. For Industry sectors, there are industry engagement committee, standard committee as well as fore mentioned Life Long Learning educational program and so on. There are many others open to all members, such as local activities in MGA. Please find and enjoy the “value” of IEEE membership. Any suggestions are welcome. Please stay safe and healthy.
IEEE R10 Director, Prof. Akinori Nishihara
Q: For Educational Activities, such as TryEngineering Summer Program, is it possible to have similar programs in Region 10?
A: Yes, it is possible, but we need some budget and volunteers to run such events. We also have to consider whether Region level events are feasible or not, compared to Section level ones.
Q: What are the key learnings on how to overcome the limitations put forward from this pandemic, with respect to IEEE related fields?
A: There are many things that engineers can do to fight with COVID-19. Region 10 Student Activities Committee called for proposals related to COVID-19 and there were 29 proposals. We have to collaborate with people in various sectors.
Q: How should we enhance the quality of virtual conferences/activities amidst the COVID limitations?
A: Virtual events have not only limitations but also advantages. People can easily attend virtual events without spending travel time and money. When the situations get better, we have to seek for various types of hybrid conferences/activities (between physical and virtual) which have higher quality yet lower risks.
IEEE R10 Director-Elect, Mr. Deepak Mathur
Q: My question is country-specific. I am a Ph.D. student and IEEE member and one day I hope to serve IEEE in some ways. I am from Nepal but doing my Ph.D. at NTU, Singapore. I strongly believe that Research Culture is needed for a country like Nepal to develop in technology or in general as well. IEEE can help a country like Nepal in many ways. But I do not see IEEE activities in Nepal. How can I involve myself in organizing IEEE activities more in this pandemic situation in my country? Do I need to connect/discuss with some specific people in Nepal?
A: I appreciate your question and concern about research and development in the field of technology in your home country Nepal. It is very much required and people like you, who have passion, can do it. There is great interest in IEEE in Nepal and we have an IEEE subsection. I am sure they would be conducting activities which you can join. As I was telling in the dialogue, IEEE is member-centric, volunteer-driven and staff-supported organization. It has more than 5 M documents in its digital library and there are various resources from IEEE for members’ technical and professional development. You can be a volunteer in your section and help in organizing events/programs to engage members and promote research which will benefit all. If you are interested, Ms Ewell will provide email address of Nepal Subsection for more information on IEEE activities in Nepal.
Q: It is interesting to hear the program for students in AI. I would like to know the strategy for the implementation? Will it be regional, R10 or within the section?
A: Depending upon the interest, (any) programs could be taken to section level or even SB level. We need volunteers at OUs to take it forward.
Q: Conferences have drastically changed the way they were organized pre corona time. What is your vision post corona – will the conferences go back as they were organized earlier OR completely revamped model of organizing conferences which will have both online and face to face approach? Do you think we will need to change the way we network in conferences?
A: It’s too early to say but during pandemic, the virtual events have got attention and there were many positive sides to that. But at the same time face to face events have their own side, especially networking and collaboration. It is going to take time to return to normal events even post corona due to various regulations posed by many countries for crossing the border. But many virtual events are going to stay because one can attend from the comfort of their own places which also saves time and money. I see a hybrid model in future and increase in virtual conferences and events but effective networking would be by meeting people in person only.
IEEE R10 Immediate Past Director & VP MGA, Prof. Kukjin Chun
Q: In the perspective of COVID-19, our IEEE student members are in a difficult situation, especially graduating engineering students, how can we help these students with their future career?
A: Students can find many supporting materials in the IEEE homepage regarding to their career development including how to write resume, make interview, job search. https://jobs.ieee.org/
Q: Like many western universities ask for Statement of Purpose (SoP), can IEEE review SoP for leadership positions at different levels? How to ensure that volunteers can spent quality times in their roles than keeping many roles?
A: Students can get help on the review from Supervisor or chair if he or she joins the IEEE Student Branch. Young Professional members in some sections also offer help on these items.
IEEE volunteers can also refer to IEEE Volunteer Training website, which is meant to help volunteers understand how IEEE functions and to explain the many services IEEE has to offer, at: https://www.ieee.org/about/volunteers/training.html