The World Economic Forum (WEF) established a new global network of the world’s leading experts, “The Annual Meeting of the Global Future Councils,” to explore innovative solutions for the most pressing global challenges. The Councils’ first meeting took place on November 13-14, 2016, in Dubai, the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Some 25 nations joined as member states. The Councils have 35 committees.
Over 700 global leaders in business, government, civil society and academia gathered at the inaugural meeting to “develop ideas and strategies to prepare the world for the Fourth Industrial Revolution, with topics including smart cities, robotics, and the future of mobility,” according to a statement issued by the WEF.
Distinguished Professor Sang Yup Lee of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at KAIST was appointed to co-chair one of the Councils' committees, The Annual Meeting of the Global Future Councils on Biotechnology, for two years. The other chairperson is Dr. Feng Zhang, a professor of Biomedical Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), who played a critical role in the development of optogenetics and CRISPR technologies.
The Biotechnology Committee consists of 24 globally recognized professionals in life sciences, law, ethics and policy including Thomas Connelly, the executive director of the American Chemical Society, Tina Fano, the executive vice president of Novozymes, and Mostafa Ronaghi, the chief technology officer of Illumina.
Professor Lee also serves as a committee member of The Annual Meeting of the Global Future Councils on the Fourth Industrial Revolution.
“Life sciences and engineering will receive more attention as a key element of the Fourth Industrial Revolution that the global society as a whole has been experiencing now. Together with thought leaders gathered worldwide, I will join the international community’s concerted efforts to address issues of importance that impact greatly on the future of humanity,” Professor Lee said.
In addition, Professor Lee received the James E. Bailey Award 2016 from The Society for Biological Engineering on November 15, 2016. He is the first Asian researcher to be recognized for his contributions to the field of biotechnology.
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