Keynote Speakers

Keynote 1

 ‘Anticipating Successive Waves of Changes as the 4th Industrial Revolution Accelerates’

DW October

Dr David Wood

Chair, London Futurists/ Principal, Delta Wisdom


Dr David Wood is a pioneer of the smartphone industry. In 1998 he co-founded Symbian, the creator of the world’s first successful smartphone operating system.

Software written by his team was included in half a billion smartphones over the following years, from companies such as Nokia, Motorola, Samsung, Panasonic, and Sony Ericsson.

He spent ten years as a software architect and software director at UK-based mobile computing innovator Psion PLC, and three years as CTO of Accenture Mobility, where he co-led the company’s Mobility Health business initiative.

He is the author or lead editor of eight books, including Anticipating 2025, Smartphones and Beyond, The Abolition of Aging, and Transcending Politics.

As Chair of London Futurists, he has hosted 200 public events on futurist and technoprogressive topics since 2008.

As Principal of Delta Wisdom, he works with organisations around the world to inject urgency into discussions of future scenarios and to anticipate forthcoming exponential disruptions.

He is a fellow of the IEET, Secretary of the Board of Directors of Humanity+, and a fellow of the RSA.

He has a triple first class mathematics degree from Cambridge and undertook doctoral research in the Philosophy of Science regarding the implications of quantum physics. He has an honorary Doctorate in Science from Westminster University, awarded in recognition of his services to the smartphone industry.

Keynote 2

‘Malaysian Megatrend: Role of IR 4.0 in Developing the Nation’

Prof Dato Dr Asma Ismail

YBhg Prof Datuk Dr Asma Ismail FASc

President, Academy of Sciences Malaysia / Vice Chancellor, Universiti Sains Malaysia


Prof Datuk Dr. Asma Ismail is a woman of many firsts. Currently, she serves as Vice-Chancellor of Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and previously was the first woman Vice-Chancellor of USM in 2012, making her the first woman to be appointed twice as Vice-Chancellor of public universities. She served as the country’s first woman Director-General of Higher Education and is currently the first woman President of Academy of Sciences Malaysia (2016-2019).

With her BSc in Biology from University of Nevada, Reno (UNR), MA (Microbiology) from Indiana University, Bloomington and PhD (Cellular and Molecular Biology) from UNR, Asma made scientific discoveries that led to attainment of 13 patents and commercialisation of rapid diagnostic test for typhoid called TYPHIDOT which was advocated by WHO. As a researcher, she published 131 papers, received more than 213 awards and recognitions, presented more than 387 papers including 351 invited talks/plenaries and 36 keynotes both at national and international levels. She was elected to The Academy of Sciences Malaysia in 2003, The Academy of Sciences for the Developing World (TWAS) in 2010 and The Islamic World Academy of Sciences in 2016. She was elected as Honorary Member of the Iranian Academy of Medical Sciences in 2017.

Her landmark contributions to Malaysia’s higher education system include establishment of the prestigious National Academic Award, 5 Research Universities in Malaysia and co-helmed development and implementation of The Malaysian Education Blueprint (higher education) 2013-2025.

For these and other achievements, she received an Honorary Doctor of Science from University of Glasgow in 2013, Indiana University’s Thomas Hart Benton Mural Medallion in 2015, Honorary Degree Doctor of the University, Keele University and Honorary Doctorate in Literature from Kyoto University of Foreign Studies (KUFS) in 2017 respectively.

Keynote 3

Malaysian 4th Industrial Revolution Standard

Prof Ir Dr Ahmad Fadzil Mohamad Hani, FASc, FIEM

President and Group Chief Executive of SIRIM Berhad