The Asia Conference (ACONF) 2022 of the Harvard College Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR), a Harvard University-based student organization, will be held from 20th-24th Aug at IIIT Delhi, India. HPAIR organizes two conferences annually – Harvard Conference (HCONF) and Asia Conference (ACONF).
The theme for this year’s ACONF is “Finding our Future”, alluding to HPAIR’s 30th anniversary and our constant need to rethink the way in which we tackle the issues society faces. The conference is packed with open dialogues around a wide range of subjects which include the evolving startup ecosystem, data security, sustainability, and content creation, among others.
The HPAIR Asia Conference comprises impact challenges, executive speaker sessions, panels, and fireside chats, among other events, to provide other avenues of growth to students and young professionals. Impact challenges serve as an apex of HPAIR’s academic programming with True Beacon, Invest India, Schwarzman Scholars, Dalberg, Council on Energy, Environment and Water, Mythos Lab, and Samagra being brought in for ACONF 2022 as some of the official partners. These challenges drive teams of delegates to collaboratively solve problems proposed by the partners. Past Impact Challenges have been run in collaboration with UNHCR, the World Bank, Tencent, McKinsey & Co, and others.
The conference will host young professionals and students from around the world joining the organizing team in Delhi to learn from speakers including Geoff Ralston, Partner & President at Y Combinator, Mina Hsiang, USDS Administrator, Aditya Ghosh, Co-Founder, Akasa Air, Former President & Director IndiGo Airlines, Kunal Shah, Founder of CRED, Deepak Bagla, CEO & MD at Invest India, Michael Horvath, Founder and CEO of Strava, Rajiv Memani, Chairman of EY India, Lesly Goh, Senior Technology Advisor and Former CTO of the World Bank, Debby Soo, CEO of OpenTable, Masoom Minawala, Global Fashion Influencer and Entrepreneur, Manish Malhotra, Acclaimed Fashion and Bollywood Costume Designer, and Syed Saddiq, youngest Member of the Malaysian Parliament, among others.
Speaking on the conference agenda, Yoel Hawa, President, Harvard Organizing Committee, says, “We are beyond thrilled to be hosting our first in-person Asia Conference since 2019, and in New Delhi for the first time in our 30-year history. As we strive to impact as many young leaders as we can, HPAIR searches for host cities that are uniquely positioned to provide a great setting for both delegates and speakers. New Delhi has proven to be a dynamic and diverse environment in which leaders in all areas can flourish.” We look forward to the incredible mix that our scholars, delegates, speakers, and staff will create with Delhi’s natural academic, professional, and educational ecosystem,” adds Joaquín Cortacáns Sosa, President, Harvard Organizing Committee.
Apart from its academic events, HPAIR will host an international and a desi night, allowing attendees to submerge themselves in other cultures as they mingle with fellow delegates, speakers, and staff.
“Attending HCONF 2021 as delegates is when we realized a clear need for such high-impact platforms to be brought to India. It was a year-long journey of planning, building a team, and competing against numerous teams that we had found out we were bringing HPAIR to New Delhi in 2022,” shares Soham Roy, President, Host country committee. “Our aim with HPAIR is to give a voice and platform to the leaders of tomorrow – today. We know future problems can’t be solved linearly, so we need our next-gen leaders to solve problems in a multidimensional way and that’s how we’ve structured this year’s conference as well,” adds Yogesh Chadha, President, Host country committee.
More than 3000 participants have applied to attend. The conference will be conducted in a hybrid format where the event will unfold over 5 days in a physical format. However, keeping in mind accessibility issues and how complex traveling has become, attending virtually is also an option.