Northeastern University Hosts Fulbright Conference on Energy & Innovation

Multidisciplinary Event to Address New Developments in Energy-related Fields

Northeastern University’s National Science Foundation (NSF) Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for High-Rate Nanomanufacturing (CHN) is hosting the annual Fulbright Academy of Science & Technology (FAST) 2008 Conference on February 14-17, 2008. Titled “Energy & Innovation,” the four-day, multidisciplinary event will bring together noted scientists, industry professionals and academics from across the globe to address new developments in energy-related fields. Ahmed Busnaina, Ph.D., William Lincoln Smith Professor and Director of CHN will make opening remarks. He will also introduce the center, its state-of-the-art facilities, and will describe the cutting-edge nanoscale science research done at the 10,000 square feet of fully-equipped facilities by more than a hundred staff.

FAST conference speakers will share their insights, ideas, and passions when addressing topics such as biotechnology, ecology, sustainable economic development,education,medical research, law, policy implementation, architecture and transportation from a variety of angles, including astrophysics, linguistics and photography.

Among the scheduled speakers and panelists are Fulbright scholars and prominent members of organizations such as the NSF, NASA, U.S. National Renewable Energy Lab, Libyan Embassy, Parsons School of Design, Pennsylvania State University and Northeastern University. The conference program will feature discussions on leaps of innovation across sectors of science and related disciplines, including:

  • Science Diplomacy Program – half-day workshop on science and technology exchanges between the U.S. and the Muslim world, with a particular focus on Libya. The recent re-establishment of diplomatic relations was marked by the signing of the bilateral Science and Technology Cooperation Agreement in January 2008. This workshop will address the opportunities for the government-, science-, and academic communities facilitating technology and science partnerships between the two nations. (Thursday, February 14 at 1:00-4:30 p.m. – Egan Engineering Center, Raytheon Amphitheatre, Northeastern University)
  • Beyond Earth to Explore Mars – presentation by Dr. Dan McCleese, Chief Scientist of NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Dr. McCleese will discuss the multinational strategy for exploring Mars and the search for evidence of past life, and examine recent results from the five rovers and orbiters operating there today. (Thursday, February 14 at 7:00-8:00 p.m. – Egan Engineering Center, Raytheon Amphitheatre, Northeastern University)
  • Linguistics and Social Sciences – a University Perspective and a National Perspective – panel presentations by Dr. Joseph E. Aoun, President of Northeastern University and Dr. David Lightfoot, Head of the Directorate for Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences at the NSF, respectively. Panelists also include Mr. Lim Chuan Poh, Chairman of the Agency for Science, Technology & Research (A*STAR) Singapore.This panel will discuss the role of math, economic and social sciencesininnovationtoday. It will also address how the people work has changed from an economics and business management perspective (Friday, February 15 at 1:30-3:00 p.m. – Egan Engineering Center, Raytheon Amphitheatre, Northeastern University)
  • Microbiology and Hydrogen Energy – panel presentation by Dr. Nina Fedoroff, Science & Technology Advisor to Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Dr. Rita Colwell, Fmr. Director of the NSF and Dr. Bruce Logan, Professor of Environmental Engineering at Pennsylvania State University (Friday, February 15 at 3:45-5:15 p.m. – Egan Engineering Center, Raytheon Amphitheatre, Northeastern University)
  • Closing Plenary Session
    Renewable Energy
    – lecture by Dr. Stanley Bull, Associate Director ofScience and Technology at the National Renewable Energy Lab
    Inner Space – the Oceans – lecture by Mr. Keith Ellenbogen from the Communications Technology & Design and Photography Departments of the Parsons School of Design. As a digital artist, he focuses on implementing innovative technologies for creative inspiration in artistic and corporate arenas, including the New England Aquarium.His underwater videography has been used incampaigns about coral reefs for Earth Echo International and Philippe Cousteau. (Sunday, February 17 at 9:30-12:00 p.m. – Egan Engineering Center, Raytheon Amphitheatre, Northeastern University)
  • Panel discussions on Saturday, February 16 will also address topics including urban planning and sustainable cities; science policy implementation; and women in science.

The conference will also include several tours in the Boston area, where attendees can take a first-hand look at the important science- and technology-focused sites, including a behind-the-scenes tour of the New England Aquarium; Northeastern’s NSF Center for High-Rate Nanomanufacturing; MIT Museum; Museum of Fine Arts; and the National Braille Press.

Organized in 2003, the Fulbright Academy of Science and Technology (FAST) is a membership organization established by the alumni of the Fulbright Exchange Program and other individuals interested in science and technology innovation.

For more information on the 2008 FAST Conference, please contact Renata Nyul at 617-373-7424 or at

About Northeastern

Founded in 1898, Northeastern University is a private research university located in the heart of Boston. Northeastern is a leader in interdisciplinary research, urban engagement, and the integration of classroom learning with real-world experience. The university’s distinctive cooperative education program, where students alternate semesters of full-time study with semesters of paid work in fields relevant to their professional interests and major, is one of the largest and most innovative in the world. The University offers a comprehensive range of undergraduate and graduate programs leading to degrees through the doctorate in six undergraduate colleges, eight graduate schools, and two part-time divisions. For more information, please visit