Keynote Speakers

KEYNOTE TITLE: Toward a Sustainable Society – Learning from Japan’s Edo Period and Contributing from Asia to the World by Junko Edahiro

We humans are now facing an unprecedented challenge. The sustainability of the very base of our existence is being shaken profoundly. Technological solutions are important but not enough. Rather, we need to review our own values and ways of living our lives. During the Edo Period (1603-1867), we had in Japan what we now call “a steady-state economy” and “a sustainable society.” Moreover, Japan is no exception. Bhutan’s concept of “Gross National Happiness” and Thailand’s “Sufficiency Economy” are just two examples of the many key concepts and initiatives in Asia which could give us insight and inspiration on how to cope with the challenges we face. Aiming at a truly sustainable society, I’d like to explore what we can relearn from Asia and what we can contribute to the world from Asia.


Junko Edahiro

Social Entrepreneur/Environmental Journalist/Translator/Professor, Tokyo City University

Current Positions:
Co-Founder and Chief Executive, Japan for Sustainability (JFS) | Founder and President, e’s Inc. | Co-Founder and Chairperson, Change Agent, Inc. | President, Institute for Studies in Happiness, Economy and Society (ISHES) | Professor, Department of Environmental Management, Tokyo City University | Initiator, Candle Night campaign | Member of the International Expert of Working Group for the New Development Paradigm appointed by the King of Bhutan

Junko Edahiro is one of most prominent environmental journalists in Japan and is a major icon for slow movements in Japan. She has translated books of Lester Brown, Al Gore, Dennis Meadows, Donella Meadows, David Suzuki and many others into Japanese, and also writes by herself dozens of books on climate change, energy, happiness, systems thinking, and many other sustainability topics. She promotes and facilitates environmental communication and dialogue among governments, corporations and citizens.

She also invites prominent opinion leaders from the U.S. and Europe, and resides several networking events, which attracts hundreds of business people, policy makers, researchers, and concerned citizens. With these activities, she is deemed as an icon figure of networking across different sectors.

KEYNOTE TITLE: The Asia-Pacific Region is the Growing Edge of the System Dynamics Society by David Andersen, Robert Eberlein & Ignacio Martinez-Moyano

David Andersen

David F. Andersen is Distinguished Service Professor of Public Administration and Information Science at the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy, University at Albany–SUNY. He is a founding fellow at the Center for Technology in Government, an information systems R&D center for the state of New York. Professor Andersen holds an AB in Mathematics and Social Sciences from Dartmouth College. He holds a PhD in Management from the MIT Sloan School of Management. Professor Andersen’s current work centers on evaluating the cost and performance characteristics of information systems and decision support systems in the public sector. His recent work has focused on the use of formal computer-based tools and models to help groups understand the system-wide impacts of information and decision support systems. Professor Andersen’s consulting and research activities include assembling and managing research and consulting teams to address a wide variety of public policy problems with clients in the public and private sectors. He has served as Dean of the Graduate School of Public Affairs and Director of the Rockefeller Institute of Public Affairs and Policy at the State University of New York. Prof. Andersen has been awarded the Jay W. Forrester Prize for the best published work in system dynamics. He is the co-author of Introduction to Computer Simulation: The System Dynamics Modeling Approach and Government Information Management as well as over eighty other edited volumes, journal articles, and book chapters dealing with system dynamics, public policy and management, and information systems. Professor Andersen is a Past President of the System Dynamics Society.

Robert Eberlein

Robert Eberlein, PhD, is a developer, researcher, teacher and consultant with expertise in addressing social, economic and business issues using the techniques of System Dynamics. He is Co-President of isee systems where he is active in the development of new software. He holds the post of Adjunct Assistant Professor at Worcester Polytechnic Institute where he teaches a graduate course on advanced model analysis techniques. He has consulted to organizations in a range of industries including pharmaceuticals, aerospace, telecommunications, information technology, retail and the military. He was the original developer of the Threshold 21 model now widely used for policy studies in developing countries. Robert holds a PhD from the Sloan School of Management at MIT with specialization in Applied Economics and System Dynamics and has served as an officer of the System Dynamics Society for 25 years.

Ignacio Martinez-Moyano

Ignacio J Martinez-Moyano is a Computational Social Scientist and the Leader of the Behavioral and System Dynamics Section in the Systems Science Center (SSC) of the Global Security Sciences (GSS) Division at Argonne National Laboratory (Argonne). Ignacio is also a Senior Fellow at the Computation Institute of The University of Chicago and President Elect (2017) of the System Dynamics Society. Dr. Martinez-Moyano’s research focuses on the effects of human judgment and decision making on behavior in complex and dynamic systems, particularly under conditions of uncertainty, stress, and high consequence. Dr. Martinez-Moyano is Editor of the “Notes and Insights” section of the System Dynamics Review and has published in such academic journals as Organization Science, the Journal of Public Administration Research and Theory, the ACM Transactions on Modeling and Computer Simulation (TOMACS), and the System Dynamics Review. In 2005, Dr. Martinez-Moyano received his Ph.D. from the University at Albany, State University of New York. Ignacio is President Elect of the System Dynamics Society.

KEYNOTE TITLE: Large Scale Systems of Singapore by Lui Pao Chuen

Singapore became an independent nation on 9th August 1965 with a population of 2 million, per capita GDP of US$526 and a territory of 1400 square kilometre. The priority of the Government was the creation of jobs, defending the country, providing education for the young and medical services and homes for the population. Centralized planning at the national level was necessary in the early years. The process of centralized planning and decentralized execution evolved over time. The need to create jobs remain a major preoccupation of the Government. The balance between investment in economic development, social development and national security is carefully managed to achieve optimization at the national level. Examples from the strategic systems of creation of usable space, supply of portable water and the future economic system based on research, innovation and enterprise will be used to illustrate the Systems Approach taken in planning and development of large scale systems.


Lui Pao Chuen

Professor Lui Pao Chuen retired in 2008 after serving 41 years in the SAF and MINDEF and 22 years as Chief Defence Scientist. He is adviser to the National Research Foundation, Prime Minister’s Office, six Ministries and Government Agencies and to President NUS and President NTU. He serves on the board of twelve research institutes and corporations. In 2002 Prof Lui received the National Science & Technology Medal “For his outstanding leadership in the build up of science and technology capability for the nation and its exploitation for major systems of national impact”.  In 2009 he received the rare Pioneer Award of International Council on Systems Engineering (INCOSE) “for dedicating his life to systems thinking and application, resulting in both an unparalleled impact in Singapore, and advances in the development of systems engineering around the world.”  In 2011 he was conferred an Honorary Fellow of the ASEAN Federation of Engineering Organizations and the Institute of Physics of Singapore President Medal. In 2014 he received the IES the Lifetime Engineering Achievement Award. In 2015 he received the Defence Technology Medal (Outstanding Service)

KEYNOTE TITLE: Is Humanity Becoming More or Less Reasonable? by Kishore Mahbubani

Is the world becoming a better place? Or are we becoming worse off? The Western answers to these questions are becoming increasingly pessimistic. Even Francis Fukuyama is becoming pessimistic. After the election of Donald Trump, he said, “The risk of sliding into a world of competitive and equally angry nationalisms is huge.” Yet, the evidence suggests that we should be optimistic. Absolute poverty is diminishing rapidly. Infant mortality is declining. People are living longer. Middle class populations are exploding all around the world. Literacy is spreading like wildfire. We are now seeing the best-educated population ever in human history. And why are things better? The simple answer is that the world is seeing the universalisation of Western reasoning. As a result, the world has seen three major revolutions. Firstly, governments are now accountable to their people, not people to governments. Secondly, rational governance is spreading to all corners. Thirdly, science and technology are also being applied universally. This is why the world is now seeing a new global paradox. While the West is becoming pessimistic, the rest are becoming optimistic. This lecture will explain the new global paradox.


Kishore Mahbubani

Kishore Mahbubani was with the Singapore Foreign Service for 33 years (1971-2004), serving, among other senior positions, as Singapore’s Ambassador to the UN. Currently, he is Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, NUS.

He writes extensively on public policy issues. Among his major books are The Great Convergence: Asia, the West and the Logic of One World, Can Asians Think?, Beyond The Age Of Innocence, The New Asian Hemisphere, The Great Convergence (selected by Financial Times as one of the best books of 2013), and Can Singapore Survive?

He was listed as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy and Prospect magazines in 2005, one of Foreign Policy’s Top Global Thinkers in 2010 and 2011. Most recently, he was selected by Prospect magazine as one of the top 50 world thinkers for 2014.