Press release content from PR Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.
PRESS RELEASE: Paid content from PR Newswire
Press release content from PR Newswire. The AP news staff was not involved in its creation.

World Leaders, CEOs, & Global Celebrities Gather at Harvard University for the HPAIR Summit

September 28, 2021 GMT
Keynote speakers and organizations gathered at the HPAIR 2021 conference.
1 of 3
Keynote speakers and organizations gathered at the HPAIR 2021 conference.
1 of 3
Keynote speakers and organizations gathered at the HPAIR 2021 conference.

CAMBRIDGE, Mass., Sept. 28, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- The Harvard College Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR), a Harvard University-based organization which operates the largest student-run conference in the U.S.A and Asia, concluded its flagship HPAIR 2021 Conference on August 20th – 23rd, 2021 — with the biggest gathering in its 30 year history. The theme of the summit was Reinventing with Resilience, where attendees shared visions on improving the state of the world following COVID-19 by engaging in disruptive innovation across social, political, academic and business dimensions.

Notable keynote speakers for the event included:

  • Bob Sternfels, CEO of McKinsey & Company
  • Manny Maceda, CEO of Bain & Company
  • Rich Lesser, CEO of Boston Consulting Group
  • Mark Suzman, CEO of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
  • Jimmy Wales, Co-Founder of Wikipedia
  • Ambassador Katherine Tai, United States Trade Representative, Cabinet Member of the United States under President Biden’s Administration
  • Adam D’Angelo, CEO & Co-Founder of Quora, Former CTO of Facebook
  • H.E. Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati, Minister of Finance for Indonesia, Former Managing Director & CFO of the World Bank
  • H.E. Minister Nadiem Makarim, Minister of Education & Culture for Indonesia, former Co-Founder of GoJek
  • N.R. Narayana Murthy, Founder and former CEO of Infosys, Board Member of the U.N. Foundation, Ford Foundation, and former Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum
  • Andreas Weigend, former Chief Scientist of, Advisor to Chancellor of Germany Angela Merkel
  • Ajay Piramal, Chairman of the Piramal Group
  • Muhammad Yunus, Winner of Nobel Peace Prize 2006 & the Presidential Medal of Freedom
  • Aparna Bawa, COO of Zoom
  • Justin Kan, Co-Founder of Twitch, Partner at Y Combinator
  • Anne Chow, CEO of AT&T (Business)
  • Yuriko Koike, Governor of Tokyo, Former Minister of Defence for Japan
  • Lord Ed Vaizey, Member of the House of Lords for the U.K.
  • Professor Peter Singer, Renowned Ethical Philosopher at Princeton University, Founder of The Life You Can Save
  • Jessica Meir, NASA Astronaut
  • Steve Aoki, Celebrity American DJ & Record Producer
  • Ho Kwon Ping, Chairman and Founder of Banyan Tree Hotels
  • Sheila Patel, CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management
  • Veronica Chou, Founder and CEO of Everybody & Everyone
  • Idris Jala, former CEO of Malaysia Airlines


“Our core focus has always been to gather people who are pioneers in their respective fields — those directly pushing the frontier of progress across that dimension of society — to engage them in Socratic dialogue with one another on issues of global importance, and then to capture those ideas generated and share them worldwide” remarked Zeel Patel, Co-President of HPAIR. “It creates a mesocosm of information transfer that only happens when two leaders interact, such as the CEO of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Co-Founder of Wikipedia.”

Lesly Goh, former CTO of The World Bank Group and member of HPAIR’s Board of Advisors, applauded the global team on their achievements: “it was quite a pleasure to support Zeel, Eric, and their team of 75 Harvard students as they orchestrated the conference from their Dubai, Boston, and Taipei offices. While the virtual format brought on tremendous challenges, it also provided incredible opportunities to maximize HPAIR’s impact and accelerate our mission of democratizing insights to our delegates, connecting young future leaders with leaders globally.” Session recordings and key takeaways will be released publicly by HPAIR.

Prospective delegates can find more information about the organization and apply for future conferences at:

About The Harvard College Project for Asian and International Relations

The Harvard College Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR) is a 30-year-old non-profit organization founded to create a forum of exchange for young professionals and current world leaders to discuss and learn about the most important technological, political, and economic issues facing the globe. The mission is to connect the top leaders of today with the future leaders of tomorrow in a dynamic forum of engagement. The organization is led by Mr. Zeel Patel and Mr. Eric Lin, undergraduates at Harvard University who serve as HPAIR’s Minister of Magic and Headmaster of Hogwarts, respectively.

Since 1991, HPAIR has organized 50 conferences in 19 different host countries, touching the lives of more than 40,000 students and young professionals. HPAIR hosts two student-led conferences a year — one on Harvard’s campus, and one in the Asia-Pacific region in August. A significant portion of the proceeds are donated to charitable organizations around the world working to increase educational access.

Prospective host cities in Asia must undergo an intensive, six-month bidding process to win the rights to host the flagship Asia Conference. The Asia Conference in August 2021 was held virtually due to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the theme Reinventing with Resilience.

Ms. Divya Amirtharaj (Americas)
Director of Public Communications

+1 (857) 997-2778

Office of The Harvard College Project for Asian & International Relations
59 Shepard Street, Harvard University
Cambridge, MA, USA


View original content to download multimedia:

SOURCE Harvard Project for Asian and International Relations (HPAIR)