When the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) convened its Annual Meeting from February 16-20, 2012 – the first gathering outside the United States in 30 years – Perimeter Institute played an active role, alongside many other Canadian scientific organizations and Waterloo Region’s own partners in innovation. The AAAS Annual Meeting is the world’s largest yearly gathering of researchers, policy makers, educators and journalists throughout science and technology. It hosts participants from approximately 60 countries who share their interests, innovations and ideas for the decades ahead. "AAAS chose an extremely timely theme for their 2012 conference, Flattening the World: Building the Global Knowledge Society,” said Neil Turok, Director of Perimeter Institute and Co-Chair of this year’s Annual Meeting. “Science, technology, engineering, and education and their wise application will be critical factors determining our course into the next century. Collaboration will be vital, both in advancing and sharing knowledge, so that we can successfully navigate the future."
For the thousands of conference attendees, the AAAS Annual Meeting offered hundreds of informative events and networking opportunities. This year, Perimeter Institute and close partners were involved in the following activities:
|Welcome remarks at the Opening Ceremony, provided by Neil Turok, Perimeter Institute Director, alongside Andrew Petter, SFU President, and Stephen H. Toope, UBC President. Turok spoke on the extraordinary power of science to open doors to the future.|
|Plenary lecture by Mike Lazaridis, Founder and Vice-Chair of RIM; Founder and Board Chair of Perimeter Institute; and Founder of the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC), on how science and education are vital for our future. Details of the plenary address, including a video playback, are available here.|
|Topical Lecture on international science and technology collaboration with Perimeter Board Member, Steven MacLean. MacLean spoke about the importance of space technologies in all that we do.|
|Career Development Workshop with affiliates of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences (AIMS), a focal point for Perimeter’s Global Outreach Operations. AIMS Affiliates examined how to accelerate young talent in the developing world.|
|Science Writer’s Party hosted by the Canadian Association of Science Writers (CSWA) and sponsored by Communitech of Waterloo Region. Science journalists and other communicators gathered to network and discuss recent news and trends in science, including attendees from Nature, BBC, CBC, The Economist and other media outlets and freelance writers.|
|Launch of the Equinox Blueprint: Energy 2030, a sustainable energy roadmap using cutting-edge science and technology, released from the Waterloo Global Science Initiative (WGSI), a partnership between Perimeter and the University of Waterloo. The Equinox Blueprint united scientists, policy experts, entrepreneurs and young future leaders to explore energy solutions for the future. Watch the recorded presentation here.|
|Quantum Communication Technologies symposium with Raymond Laflamme, Perimeter Associate Faculty and Executive Director of the Institute for Quantum Computing, along with Canadian and international colleagues. This session took a packed audience to the cutting edge of quantum information technologies as they relate to global communication, from satellites to encryption technologies.|
Perimeter's participation was part of a broader effort in sharing the ideas and outputs of multiple research and education organizations across the country. In fact, over 30 Canadian partners were involved in the 2012 AAAS Annual Meeting. Several organizations from the Waterloo Region of Ontario will participated in activities organized by Communitech, an umbrella organization to the high tech sector. In addition to contributions from Perimeter, IQC and WGSI, attendees at AAAS had opportunities to learn about work flowing from Wilfrid Laurier University, the Canadian Digital Media Network, the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology located at the University of Waterloo, and other Communitech partners. "Waterloo Region thrives on collaboration," said Iain Klugman, President of Communitech. "And the community-wide participation in AAAS says as much about that cooperative spirit as it does about the innovation ecosystem that’s driving cutting-edge research, advanced education, growth in companies and jobs." You can review the full program of events at AAAS to learn more about the many activities that involved researchers, policy makers, educators and science communicators from Ontario’s Waterloo Region, across Canada and all around the world.
The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is an international, non-profit organization dedicated to advancing science around the world by serving as an educator, leader, spokesperson and professional association. In addition to organizing membership activities, AAAS publishes the journal Science, as well as many scientific newsletters, books and reports, and spearheads programs that raise the bar of understanding for science worldwide.
Founded by a group of dedicated entrepreneurs in 1997, Communitech is the regional hub for the commercialization of innovative technologies supporting and building a southwestern Ontario tech cluster of more than 800 companies that now generates more than $25B in revenue. Communitech supports tech companies at all stages of their growth and development – from startup companies, to rapidly growing SMEs, to large global players – to create greater numbers of successful global businesses for Ontario and for Canada.