September 17-19, 2020 - Leaders from Silicon Valley and Korea agreed to focus on technology innovation to solve some of the biggest problems facing the world today, including COVID-19, environment and urbanization.
The agreement was reached upon the conclusion of the inaugural Silicon Valley Business Forum (SVBF), which closed on Sept 18, connecting the world’s most dynamic regions in Silicon Valley, Canada, Korea, and Asia. This remarkable meeting brought some of the world’s most innovative companies and leaders from government, academia, and civil society for a three-day virtual meeting hosted in California and Seoul.
Dr. Ossama Hassenein, Chairman of the Board of the Silicon Valley Business Forum, told participants that the Forum built bridges between Korea and Silicon Valley, and connecting leaders from across the globe, “exploring innovations in e-mobility and sustainability, institutions, corporations, cities, public-private partnerships, and start-ups.”
This year’s program focus on technology innovation included presentation by trailblazers on both sides of the Pacific. Precision Nanosystems (PNI), for example, which focuses in transformative medicines and supports over 20 companies working on COVID-19 vaccines. PNI’s future vision for the future of the pandemics is for vaccine candidates to be developed within days. Another company, Amazon Web Services (AWS), noted that Amazon’s global carbon footprint affects 0.11% of the world’s total, and it is looking to operate with 100% renewable energy by 2025, 50% shipments net zero carbon by 2030, and $2 billion in funding for innovative companies as part of the Climate Pledge Fund.
The Forum not only introduced breakthrough innovations, but serve to fill an important gap in international relations. “Today, there is no clear leadership from one country and system of cooperation between countries,” remarked Dr. Heebom Lee, Korea’s former Minister of Trade, Industry, and Energy, “in this climate, the Silicon Valley Business Forum is critical in bridging countries and creating connectedness by building communication. It is a reflection of the very important partnership between South Korea and the United States.” One of participants of the forum echoed this sentiment, remarking that SVBF “unleashed international collaboration for a better world.”
Chairman Kook-Hyun Moon, President of New Paradigm Institute and co-founder of the Silicon Valley Business Forum, shared the sense of big opportunities (and urgency) for new collaboration across the Pacific. He shared a 2020 global ranking where Beijing, Tokyo, and Seoul were ranked as top 20 cities for start-up ecosystems. For Seoul, ranking 20 in the index, this position reflects both the city’s remarkable progress in the past years and its latent potential.
The Asia Foundation launched a groundbreaking study on Start-up and Social Innovation Ecosystem in Korea. Written in partnership with Hanyang University, the report examines the role of start-ups and social innovation in the search of new growth models in Korea while addressing inclusion and inequality.
An important outcome of the forum was the Ten Commitments issued by President Kook-Hyun Moon and Dr. Ossama Hassenein. One of the commitments stated that “SVBF will connect Silicon Valley, North America, Korea, Asia, the Middle East, and other countries to accelerate advancements towards a sustainable and livable world, addressing the world’s most pressing problems, particularly climate change (including wild forest fires), geo-political conflicts, as well as inequality and inclusion issues all over the World.”
The International Electric Vehicle Expo (IEVE) and Silicon Valley Business Forum (SVBF)
The IEVE/Silicon Valley Business Forum is organized in concert with the 7th annual International Electric Vehicle Expo (IEVE), which will be held in Jeju Island (Korea) on December 9-11th, 2020. IEVE was Instituted by Korea’s Ministry of Industry & Commerce and the Ministry of Environment. Today, it has grown to an international event attracting 70,000 visitors, including academic researchers and over 150 leading companies from 40 countries.