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TEDxITU 2017 Concludes

The event featured a diverse pool of speakers from various professional domains ranging from health, technology and entrepreneurship to arts and music
By TR Pakistan

TEDxITU concluded on a high note on Saturday, with more than 300 participants at the conference. The second chapter of TEDxITU was organised at Arfa Software Technology Park. This year’s  theme was ‘Afraad Ke Hathon Main Hai.’

The day-long event was supported by Inbox Technologies and was curated as a community-based platform where some of the finest minds in the country were invited to share their ideas. More than 1,100 applications were received from across Pakistan, of which 300 were shortlisted for the event.

This year’s TEDxITU featured a diverse pool of speakers from various professional domains ranging from health, technology and entrepreneurship to arts and music. The event was split into three sessions.

Careem co-founder Mudassir Sheikha spoke on local advantage while operating in a new market. Switch ITC CEO Danielle Sharaf built on Mudassir’s ideas by sharing lessons she learnt in the tech industry. Mohammad Raza, ITU’s 13-yr old computing prodigy, brought the theme full circle by talking about his work on Rekhta – a program that slices the time required to type in Urdu to half through intelligent autocompletion.

Read more: TEDxITU: Afraad Ke Hathon Main Hai

This year’s TEDxITU theme focused on individual actions which could bring great changes in various communities. Abdullah Ahmed, shared his vision for CricFlex, which had started out as a final year university project and is now an exciting startup for cricket bowlers to maintain a legal bowling action through its patented technology.

TED Senior Fellow Usman Riaz shared his vision for a thriving hand-drawn animation studio in Pakistan through Mano Animation Studios and his work on Glassworker – their first animated feature film.

Patari COO Ahmer Naqvi argued for the importance of music in culture, social causes and identity formation. British Council Education Director Nishat Riaz made an impassioned case for places for higher learning – not just higher education. Arshad Faruqui discussed his passion for better public spaces through Pursukoon Karachi. Neha Mankani shared her vision for countering emergency maternal health problems through Mama Baby Fund. TED Fellow Nighat Dad discussed her Digital Rights Foundation which is countering cyber harassment. Mariam Paracha discussed her work on free speech. Amina Rizwan, a metalsmith, shared her work with artefacts and the importance of people as ethnographers.

TEDxITU was concluded by Ali Hamza from Noori who interwove his talk with pieces of original music as he shared with the audience a musician’s journey in the course of their career.  Hamza concluded his talk by performing the National Anthem.

The event also featured Action Breaks between the sessions designed to encourage connectivity, curiosity and a sense of play for participants. These Action Breaks were led by different activity partners which included Citizen Archive of Pakistan (CAP) who showcased Oral History Project, a community art project by Makeistan and Vanguard Books with a bookspace and a reader’s corner. Other activity partners included PlanX, MIT Enterprise Forum Pakistan, MIT Technology Review Pakistan, DIY Geeks, and Alooclan.

TEDxITU was supported by the ITU administration, including Vice Chancellor Umar Saif and Registrar Zaheer Sarwar.

TEDx events are independently organized multidisciplinary conferences licensed under TED. These events help create better communities by bringing together people from different disciplines and walks of life.

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