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Viterbi School Cohosts Second National Summit on Engineering Grand Challenges October 6-8

Leading innovators, educators, policymakers and corporate executives will discuss the connections between engineering innovation and solving global problems

September 23, 2010 —

NAE President Charles Vest will deliver a keynote address at the 2010 Grand Challenges Summit
The second national summit on the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenges, which will focus on global issues related to sustainability, vulnerability, health, and the “joy of living,” will be held on the campus of the University of Southern California October 6-8, 2010.

Broadcast veteran and CNN former science and technology correspondent Miles O’Brien will moderate the two-day master session on October 7-8, which will include dynamic panels organized around the perspectives of technology, innovation, business, policy, education and communications.

A common thread will be the importance of fostering innovation, economic growth and job creation. The interconnection between the various perspectives and the creation of a K-12 pipeline of engineering talent and other human resources will be an important part of the summit presentations and discussion.

The speakers for the summit include:

  • Martha Shumate Absher,Associate Dean for Education and Outreach,Pratt School of Engineering of Duke University
  • Bill Allen, President & CEO, Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation
  • Amy Alving, Chief Technology Officer, Science Applications International Corporation
  • Isaac Babbs, Vice President of Business Development, Qualcomm
  • Austin Beutner, City of Los Angeles Deputy Mayor, General Manager
    Los Angeles Department of Water & Power

  • Jean-Lou Chameau, President, Caltech
  • Peter Diamandis, Founder and Chairman, X Prize Foundation
  • Paul Debevec, Associate Director, Institute for Creative Technologies, USC; Academy Award recipient for work on Avatar and other films
  • Robert Cook, Vice President of Advanced Technology, Pixar Animation Studios
  • Michael Escalante, Superintendent (retired), Glendale Unified School District
  • Deborah Estrin, Professor of Computer Science, University of California - Los Angeles
  • Dana P. Goldman, Director, Leonard D. Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics, USC
  • Jay Greene, Journalist and Author: Design Is How It Works
  • Susan Hackwood, Executive Director, California Council on Science and Technology
  • Mark S. Humayun, Director, National Science Foundation Biomimetic MicroElectronics Systems Engineering Research Center
  • Henry Jenkins, Provost's Professor of Communication, Journalism, and Cinematic Arts, USC
  • Tom Katsouleas, Dean, Pratt School of Engineering, Duke University
  • Jerome P. Lavelle, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs College of Engineering
    North Carolina State University

  • Alexis Livanos, Corporate Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, Northrop Grumman
  • Linda Katehi, Chancellor, University of California – Davis
  • Maria Klawe, President, Harvey Mudd College; Director, Microsoft Corporation
  • John Martin, CEO, Gilead
  • Richard K. Miller, President, Olin College of Engineering
  • C. L. Max Nikias, President, University of Southern California
  • Franklin Orr, Director, Precourt Institute for Energy, Stanford University
  • Pedro Pizarro, Executive Vice President, Southern California Edison
  • William "Monty" Reichert, Director, Center for Biomolecular and Tissue Engineering Pratt School of Engineering, Duke University
  • Ares J. Rosakis, Chair, Division of Engineering and Applied Science, California Institute of Technology
  • James Shelton III, Assistant Deputy Secretary, U.S. Department of Education
  • John Brooks Slaughter, Professor of Engineering and Education, USC
  • Matthew Tirrell, Chair, Department of Bioengineering, University of California- Berkeley
  • Ali Velshi, Chief business correspondent, CNN
  • Charles Vest, President, National Academy of Engineering
  • Matthew Wald, Journalist, The New York Times
  • Jeff Wilcox, Corporate Vice President, Engineering, Lockheed Martin Corporation
  • Peter Williams, Chief Technology Officer, IBM Big Green Innovations

The goals of the summit include:

  • Identifying how engineering, science, and technology entrepreneurship can lead to the creation of new jobs
  • Enhancing public interest in engineering and science by articulating their critical roles in modern society
  • Creating public awareness of the importance of policy to engineering innovation and implementation
  • Stimulating future collaborations of engineers, policymakers and practitioners of business, law, social sciences and humanities to address the complex societal issues raised by technological innovation

The national summit represents the culmination of a series of regional summits throughout the year that have been organized around the Grand Challenges. In 2008, the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) announced 14 Grand Challenges where engineering can have the greatest impact on society. The challenges cover a wide spectrum of issues, from making solar power more economical to providing access to clean water to engineering better medicines to preventing nuclear terror.

Universities across the United States have responded to the NAE’s call to action. The USC Viterbi School of Engineering, Duke University Pratt School of Engineering, California Institute of Technology, and Olin College are sponsoring this year’s national summit at USC. Duke hosted the first national summit in March 2009.

The 2010 summit’s goals are ambitious and far-ranging, according to Yannis Yortsos, dean of the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. “The NAE’s Grand Challenges allow us to look at global problems through a framework that interweaves technology, innovation and public policy. The 2010 summit will bring to campus policymakers, corporate leaders and renowned academics to discuss solutions that are real, implementable and game-changing,” said Yortsos.

The summit will commence with a Student Day on October 6. October 7-8 will feature engaging panel discussions from a diverse group of presenters. For an overview of the summit, speakers and events, go to: http://naegrandchallengessummit2010.org/

Lockheed Martin is the Presenting Sponsor for the Summit and the Student Day.

Members of the media, educators, students and individuals from the private sector are encouraged to attend the series of discussions.