Techii Forum 2016 Featured Speakers

* Panel: Data Science


Big Data is transforming the way we live, work, and think, with growing effects on just about everything: business, government, science and medicine … it predicts future behavior, casts light on buying patterns, and disrupts business models … however, it also poses new threats from the end of privacy.

Frontiers in data science will give us a glimpse into this rising field.

Rory Macneil – Founder and CEO of Research Space, which provides a software platform for capturing, managing, sharing and presenting scientific research data. This platform enables research labs to integrate research data with other tools, file systems and databases; it also enables research institutions and biotechs to comply with requirements of funders; and present their research data to collaborators, regulators and acquirers.

Rory holds a JD from Harvard Law School.

Carl Kraenzel – an IBM Distinguished Engineer and Vice President for Watson Health Commercial Operations, responsible for Watson cloud operations, IT security, and client support in healthcare and life sciences.

Carl was one of the first executives IBM originally assigned to commercialize Watson in 2011. Carl has since overseen global deployments of IBM Watson for hundreds of clients and partners such as MD Anderson, SoftBank Japan, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centers, Cognit in UAE, Manipal in India and more. In that same period Carl also has served as the Chief Information Security Officer for Watson Group and Watson Health Group.

Prior to joining the Watson business, Carl was Chief Technology Officer for End User Services in IBM’s Global Technology Services (GTS), overseeing IBM’s global IT services in areas of end user device deployment, management, support, mobile devices and Cloud.

Carl has also led software development projects for IBM, and over his career has incubated numerous strategic offerings such as IBM Watson, IBM Desktop Cloud, IBM Smart Cloud Enterprise, IBM Real Time Translation Services, IBM Self Enablement Portal, Eclipse for Lotus Notes, Lotus Sametime, Lotus QuickPlace, Lotus Discovery Server, Domino Off-Line Services, Lotus Weblicator and more. Carl has 29 granted patents.

Carl holds a Bachelor of Science in physics from MIT, specializing in superconductive quantum circuit technology.

Sergei M-L – Principal Data Scientist of LolaTravel. Sergei started working on data analysis before it was really called that. Sergei and his team at Lola Travel are building service that brings together AI and live travel agents to help travelers book the perfect trip. Before joining Lola, Sergei worked at TripAdvisor on improving hotel recommendations, revenue optimization, SEM, and fraudulent review detection. He had also worked at CNET doing personalization and content tagging.

Sergei received his PhD in Mathematics from Stanford University, and BS from University of Chicago.

Alan Rozet – Co-Founder and CTO of Pilot – Through machine learning, latent semantic analysis, and network analysis, Pilot estimates a film’s box office performance before the first word of its script has even been written. He also works as a full-time data scientist at Firecracker, an adaptive ed-tech company in Boston providing personalized education for medical students. There, he primarily focuses on improving Firecracker’s spaced review algorithm, while conducting predictive behavioral analytics to promote user engagement and effectiveness of the platform.

Alan holds a Bachelor’s  degree from Harvard College.


Greg Woolf – founder and CEO of Coalesce, a personalized research assistant that combines machine learning with human expertise to provide relevant information to business users about their prospects, customers and investments. A product visionary, Greg brings more than 25 years of vision and experience in delivering state-of-the-art software for investment and business management and research. Greg was awarded the 2015 IT-CEO of the year by AI Global for his innovative creation of an artificial-intelligence product for business research.

Greg received degrees in Computer Science, Math, and Finance, with Distinction from WITS University(South Africa). Greg has contributed as a guest lecturer at MIT and is a frequent guest speaker at industry conferences.He has been published in numerous publications, appeared in an IBM Watson TV Commercial, and moderates the Cognitive Computing group of Boston.

* Panel: 21 Century Education

TechII - Education

From educational apps to virtual reality and augmented reality empowered classrooms, technology is reshaping how we learn – it engages students in a completely new way.

This panel opens a window into the future of education.

Featured speakers:

Ulla Engestrom – Founder and CEO of ThingLink, a pioneering tech leader in interactive media and education. ThingLink established the concept of a 360 degree learning environment. Over two million teachers and students across the world use ThingLink’s technology to add a rich information overlay to images, videos, and 360 photos. Engestrom is interested in the concept of a 360 degree learning environment, redefining the role of images and video in teaching and learning.

Doctoral studies in education at the University of Helsinki and London School of Economics.

Mats Johansson – Co-Founder and CEO of EonReality. Mats plays a key role in the company’s rapid growth and is widely recognized as a leading innovator in his respective field. Mats specializes in strategic issues surrounding the development of EON’s Augmented Virtual Reality applications particularly in Education, Aerospace/Defense, Energy and Manufacturing sector.

Mats earned a Masters Degree in Mechanical Engineering from Chalmers University and an MBA from Gothenburg School of Business (Sweden).


Svetlana Dotsenko – Founder and CEO of Project Lever, an educational technology company that creates an international research network for universities. Lever assimilates information on faculty members and their research projects, and matches students and collaborators to faculty. Under Svetlana’s leadership, Lever has been adopted at various divisions of Harvard, MIT, Columbia, Boston College, University of Notre Dame, and is currently actively expanding globally. Svetlana has contributed thought leadership pieces to Forbes, TechCrunch, Huffington Post, Fast Company, and Boston.com, writing on educational technology and career development.

Svetlana received her undergraduate degree from Harvard College in 2011, where she concentrated in Government and Neurobiology and was the President of Harvard European Society.

* Panel: Renewable Energy


Revolution Now: The Future Arrives for Clean Energy Technologies.

Renewable energy technologies are transforming how we produce and use energy. This panel will discuss the renewable energy revolution we are currently undergoing,  and challenges we still face, as well as the emerging technologies on the horizon such as smart grid and energy storage etc.

Featured Speakers:

Roy Gordon – Harvard Thomas Dudley Cabot Professor of Chemistry and Professor of Materials Science; Director of the Center for Nanoscale Systems. Gordon studied chemical physics at Harvard with Professor J. H. Van Vleck. Following a Junior Fellowship at Toronto and Brussels, he returned to Harvard, where he has served as Chairman of the Department of Chemistry and is the Thomas D. Cabot Professor of Chemistry. His research has spanned a wide range of subjects from applied mathematics to quantum mechanics, spectroscopy, intermolecular forces, solid state and materials science. His theoretical work has lead to a better understanding of bonding in molecules and solids, and to predictions of new solid phases and phase transitions. The chemical kinetics of crystal growth from vapor systems are being studied both theoretically and experimentally in his laboratory. His discoveries of new materials and vapor deposition processes are widely used commercially for making thin films in solar cells, energy-conserving window coatings, display devices and semiconductor electronics.

Emanuele Pecora – at Solar Energy Technologies Office, US Dept of Energy. Emanuele manages awards covering a broad range of solutions lowering the cost of solar energy, from hardware components, to new business models, to new software platforms. He also works on the creation and execution of funding opportunities for large companies and start-ups with the goal of accelerate the commercialization of tech inventions and innovation. Before joining Sunshot, he was a PostDoc at Stanford University working on engineering nanostructures and metamaterials to increase solar cells performances. Emanuele is also the founder and first organizer of TEDxSSC in Italy, and a communication coach for start-ups in the StartX accelerator.

Emanuele holds a Ph.D. in Physics from University of Catania (Italy)


Robert Gustafson – PhD Candidate in Applied Physics at Harvard University. President of Harvard Energy Journal Club. Robert’s research focuses on manufacturing techniques for thin film solar cells.