Friday, November 04, 2005

Blockbuster lectures

Engineers for a Sustainable World at Caltech (ESW-CIT) just hosted the second in a series of really cool lectures.

Today, Joel Segre talked about developing Foldable Intraocular Lens, about partnering with Indian Eye Care experts, Aravind, and about partnering with Indian Manufacturing.
Having come from California, he had funny stories about the how the Indian way diverged from his expectations. Energetic young man.

From the ESW-CIT website:
Speaker Bios
October 27 Dr. Paul Polak from International Development Enterprises
November 3 Joel Segre from Project Impact
November 10 Amy Smith from MIT
November 17 Michael Rosberg from the University of Belize
December 1 Ben Linder.

From the advertising for today's talk:
" Engineers for a Sustainable World @ Caltech (ESW-CIT) presents:
Dr. Joel Segre, Project Impact
Medical Device Development for the Developing World: One Recent Grad's Experience
Joel Segre will share how he strayed from the for-profit path and found himself working as an engineer and project manager at a nonprofit focusing on medical device development for poverty alleviation. Over the past three years, Joel has worked to develop a sight-restoring intraocular lens for manufacturing and distribution in India. While much of the development work was done in Berkeley, CA, the product is now manufactured across the street from the highest volume cataract surgery center in the world, the Aravind Eye Care System. Aravind performs over 200,000 cataract surgeries annually, two thirds of which are done below cost. Despite taking a loss on over 145,000 patients every year, Aravind is financially self-sustaining. Joel's talk will focus on his current job, and the unexpected challenges he faces in his work both at home and abroad.
This talk is presented in collaboration with Prof. Ken Pickar and E/ME 105."

News: A certain parent ;) of ESW-CIT will soon join in Money Talk.


t said...

Actually expecting more than one ESW / ESW-CIT member.
Nir, ...and Brendan.

t said...

Amy Smith was really cool. She is excited about technology and devices that solve those little nagging problems that screw up the quality of life of the less moneyed majority of the world. She is a MacArthur fellow, which is a cool thing to be. SHe's also an academic who knew early on she didn't care to get her PhD.

The talk by the economist from Belize was also memorable; after outlining some of his thoughts on how to ACTUALLY develop a place as a project (Likely material from his book: THE POWER OF GREED with the intro - Why do so many international development projects fail? Is it because poor regions are inherently corrupt, or is it because developers and donors do not properly take into account how local survival mechanisms work?), after delivering his prepared notes, he took questions, such as, well, when is one's work done, if you're a do-gooder living in a foreign country? You know what he said? When you start thinking everybody doesn't make sense, everybody's crazy, because that means you're tired.

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