think.BDPST is AJKC’s most ambitious and prestigious event, organised in cooperation with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary and supported by the International Visegrad Fund. The main aim of the conference is to discuss further possibilities of regional development and the newest trends and perspectives of innovation, research, and technology. The conference invites the most notable thinkers of the business, industry, NGO, and political sectors to share new knowledge and inspire each other to develop forward-thinking strategies that will facilitate the development of the whole Visegrad region. The event also aims to position Budapest as an ideal destination for enterprises with a pioneering spirit, seeking new horizons, new markets to enter, or a new territory and knowledge base to include in their plans for the future.
During the four years since its inception, think.BDPST has covered a variety of topics. The first instalment of think.BDPST focused on future technologies, innovation, and regional development, while the second explored specific fields of social innovation and healthcare. The 2018 event revolved around topics such as the future of transportation, the innovation potential of human-machine interaction, and urban innovation. For the first time in its history, think.BDPST featured a guest country, with the Republic of Korea enjoying the special status considering its results as the world’s leading innovator, the key importance of Hungarian-Korean relations, and the rapidly developing V4+Korea cooperation. The previous instalment of the conference focused on topics such as smart home and the challenges of digitalisation. The guest country of the 2019 event was the United Kingdom, given the fact that the country has been in the forefront of championing a technology-intensive-growth model.
Past speakers of think.BDPST include Lord David Willetts, Board Member of the UK Research and Innovation; George Pataki, Former Governor of the State of New York; George Friedman, geopolitical forecaster and strategist; Dr Edmund Stoiber, Former Prime Minister of the State of Bavaria; Sheik Dr Mohammad Sabah Al-Salem Al-Sabah, Former Deputy Prime Minister of Kuwait; Rabbi Professor Daniel Hershkowitz, Former Minister of Science and Technology of the State of Israel; HE Chang Whan Ma, Deputy Minister for Planning and Coordination at the Ministry of Science and ICT of the Republic of Korea; Robert-Jan Smits, Director General for Research and Innovation at the European Commission; Dr Jacob Cohen, Chief Scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center, and HE Péter Szijjártó, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary.
With the 2020 event, our aim is to continue this tradition and go deeper into exploring specific areas such as the future of 5G, innovative solutions in the fields of environment protection, or the regulation of tech giants in today’s societies.
The conference has two side events, the Young Leaders’ Forum and the Start-up Expo. The Young Leaders’ Forum (YLF) features outstanding young professionals between the age of 24 and 38, soon to become important actors and decision-makers in the field of innovation, research, and development. YLF is the only forum in Central Europe that gathers young professionals from the region. The Start-up Expo is an exhibition where innovative enterprises, innovators, and start-ups – key actors of the Central European innovation scene – have the opportunity to meet and share ideas, while promoting their products in front of the international audience, as well as the visitors and investors present at think.BDPST.
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