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Asia’s Next Generation of Leaders to Meet in Seoul, Dec. 8-10

SEOUL, December 1, 2016 – Asia Society’s Asia 21 Young Leaders Initiative, the region’s preeminent network of next-generation leaders, will host its annual summit December 8-10 in Seoul.

Asia 21 is a network of more than 800 young leaders from 30 countries focused on shaping a brighter future for the Asia-Pacific region. Each year, Asia Society selects a new class of leaders through a competitive process based on outstanding achievement, commitment to public service, and a proven ability to make the world a better place.

At this years’ summit, the 33 members of the initiative’s 2016 class will meet select alumni and other leaders to develop solutions to the most critical issues facing the region.

Members of the 2016 class include:

Ankit Agarwal (India), a social entrepreneur attempting to curb toxic runoff into the river Ganges by collecting floral waste from temples;
Kongngy Hav (Cambodia), founder of a social venture tackling chronic shelter shortages through the production of affordable and eco-friendly bricks;
Sylvia Kim (Canada), a lawyer advocating for the human rights of North Koreans;
Je-Wook Lee (Republic of Korea), a media executive introducing new approaches to publishing in his country;
Catlin Ishihara Powers (U.S.), a social entrepreneur helping households in developing countries meet their energy needs by using solar power;
Magdalena Seol (Republic of Korea), a key player in her country’s climate change and low-carbon economic development agendas.

Confirmed participants in addition to the 2016 class include:

Neal Cross, managing director and chief innovation officer at DBS Bank;
Wendy Cutler, chief U.S negotiator for the KORUS free trade agreement;
Lotfullah Nazafizada, head of TOLOnews, Afghanistan's largest 24-hour news station;
Dr. Sanduk Ruit, eye surgeon and co-founder of the Himalayan Cataract Project, who has restored sight to thousands of people in Asia.
A schedule of programs open to journalists at the Asia 21 Summit follows. To register for the summit or to request interviews with participants, journalists should email [email protected].

"Asia 21 Summit: Building a Resilient Future"

Programs Open to Journalists

Date: December 9, 2016
Location: Lotte Hotel Seoul (30 Eulji-ro, Euljiro 1(il)-ga, Jung-gu, Seoul)
Media registration: Email Asia Society's press office ([email protected]).

(Note: All programming is subject to change and will be held at the Lotte Hotel Seoul. All times denoted in local time, GMT+9)



8:30 AM-8:45 AM: Welcome Remarks

Gen Kanai, Mentor, 500 Startups / Chinaccelerator (Class of 2009)
Ewa Wojkowska, Co-Founder and COO, Kopernik (Class of 2013)

8:45 AM-9:45 AM: Resilient Leadership at a Time of Uncertainty

Yusra Askari, Pakistan Correspondent, New Delhi Television (Class of 2014)
Jo-ar Herrera, Chief, Philippine Army (Class of 2007)
Sylvia Kim, Regional Director, Asian Americans Advancing Justice (Class of 2016)
Lotfullah Nazafizada, Director, TOLOnews TV (Class of 2012)

Moderated by Aaron Maniam, Director of the Industry Division, Singapore’s Ministry of Trade and Industry (Class of 2008)


9:45 AM-11:15 AM: Innovation Masterclass

Neal Cross, Managing Director and Chief Innovation Officer, DBS Bank

11:30 AM-1:00 PM: Asia 21 Action Lab: Levering the Asia 21 Network

Rajeev Goyal, Co-founder, Koshi Tappu Kanchenjunga Biodiversity Education Livelihood Terra-Studio (KTK-BELT) (Class of 2015)
Emily Chew, Managing Director, Manulife Asset Management (Class of 2015)

1:00 PM-2:30 PM: Luncheon Keynote

Dr. Ruit Sanduk, Co-Founder, Himalayan Cataract Project

4:00 PM-5:30 PM: Breakout Sessions
a) Women in a Man’s World: The Art of Negotiation

Wendy Cutler, Vice President, Asia Society Policy Institute and former Acting Deputy U.S. Trade Representative
Mitsuru Claire Chino, Executive Officer/General Counsel, Itochu Corporation (Class of 2006)

b) Leveraging New Technologies to Scale Impact/Accelerate Change

Deepak Ravindran, CEO, Lookup (Class of 2013)
Catlin Ishihara Powers, Co-founder & CEO, One Earth Designs (Class of 2016)

c) Using Arts and Culture to Build Livable Cities

Robin Loon, Senior Lecturer, Department of English Language & Literature, National University of Singapore (Class of 2007)
Phloeun Prim, Executive Director, Cambodian Living Arts (Class of 2012)

d) Designing Solutions for Collective Impact Session Organizers

Lisa Katayama, Senior Advisor and Founding Program Manager, MIT Media Lab's Director's Fellows (Class of 2015)
Daisuke Kan, Executive Director, Cheerio (Class of 2011)