Co-founder of Covid-19 vaccine producer Moderna to speak at EmTech Europe 2021

  • Photo: Kenneth Chien, co-founder of Moderna

    EmTech Europe, which is coming to Belfast in July, has announced the co-founder of Covid-19 vaccine producer, Moderna as one of its virtual speakers.

    Medical scientist Kenneth Chien helped create pharma firm Moderna, which has bases in Boston and Stockholm. 

    He will look at how top biotech countries like Sweden are leading examples of life sciences enterprise which can be copied by other regions, and what societal and governmental structures are in place to foster and encourage the growth of health technologies.

    Mr Chien will take to the online stage from 1 - 2 July along with other tech leaders during this year's 'EmTech Europe - Forging a Brighter Future', which will focus on artificial intelligence (AI), health and sustainability under the themes of an Intelligent Future, a Healthy Future, and a Sustainable Future.

    Tom Gray is the Lead curator of EmTech Europe and also the Chief Technology Officer for homegrown Northern Ireland tech giant, Kainos.

    He said: “The aim of EmTech Europe is to give a platform to those most influential voices in the technology, policy and business spheres, and to help spark new ideas and conversations about how technology can create more prospects and opportunities in our post-pandemic world.

    "The caliber of talent coming to EmTech Europe exemplifies the experts we have across the continent who are collectively pushing the boundaries of what technology can do in our world."

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    As well as Mr Chien's pharmaceutical contributions, featured speakers and topics will include:

    A Healthy Future: Practitioners and thought leaders examine emerging solutions in connected health and telemedicine, and breakthroughs in the development of Messenger RNA vaccines for Covid. They will also explore how these advances can be applied to tackle other healthcare delivery issues and disease states.

    A Sustainable Future: Meet the engineers, entrepreneurs, politicians, polemicists, funders, futurists, and founders who are leveraging emerging technologies to stave off planetary meltdown assess the breakthrough technologies, from renewables and green energy solutions, optimizing manufacturing processes.

    Peter Rawlinson, Chief Executive and Chief Technology Officer of Lucid Motors, and formerly Chief Engineer of Tesla will look at how European carmakers are under pressure to sell more electric cars or face huge fines for breaching new emissions rules aimed at tackling global warming. Peter will also look at the significant barriers to widespread adoption of electric batteries in vehicles remain in relation to cost, energy storage efficiency and recharging and question if society is exploiting the full potential of the electric vehicle revolution to accelerate a societal green shift.

    An Intelligent Future: AI is increasingly affecting every person and every human activity. Leaders in the industry will examine how AI related technologies are being applied to society’s challenges and in what ways AI research can be directed to have an instrumental role in building a better, more sustainable and equitable future for all.

    Dr Nora Khaldi, Founder and Chief Executive of Nurtias will lead EmTech Europe’s "View from the Labs" session which highlights exciting research that is driving significant advances, which for Nora and Nuritas is the use of AI to identify peptides in everyday food that can have a beneficial effect on health outcomes.

    Co-founder and Chief Strategic Officer of Darktrace, Nicole Eagan, will discuss the drivers and impacts of invisible AI, looking at how we are interacting more and more with AI without awareness and what that means for the future of the industry.

    Author Marga Hoek will delve into the battle to save the planet by meeting UN Sustainable Development Goals and how tech for good can be implemented in all strands of technology and business.

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    The conference is supported by Belfast City Council and Invest NI, and will take place virtually in July 2021 before returning to Belfast in 2022 and 2023.

    To find out more and register for the virtual conference, visit:

    About the author

    Niamh is a Sync NI writer with a previous background of working in FinTech and financial crime. She has a special interest in sports and emerging technologies. To connect with Niamh, feel free to send her an email or connect on Twitter.

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