Keynote Speakers

1.  Keynote speaker (Fri Jun 9)
Title: Open Data - The State of the Art
Joel Gurin, President and Founder, Center for Open Data Enterprise

Abstract: Over the last decade, the open data movement has changed the ways governments, civil society, and the private sector work together. Beyond its importance for transparency, open data has become a tool for business development, research, public-private collaboration, and improving public services. This keynote will describe how the open data movement has evolved, current challenges and opportunities, and what lies ahead.
Bio: Joel Gurin is President and Founder of the Center for Open Data Enterprise (, a Washington-based nonprofit that works to maximize the value of open data as a public resource. He also serves as a senior open data consultant to the World Bank. Before launching the Center in January 2015 he wrote the book Open Data Now and led the launch team for the GovLab’s Open Data 500 study and Open Data Roundtables. He previously served as Chair of the White House Task Force on Smart Disclosure and as Chief of the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau of the U.S. Federal Communications Commission. For over a decade he was Editorial Director and then Executive Vice President of Consumer Reports, where he directed the development of, the world’s largest paid-subscription information-based website. He can be reached at or through his Twitter handle, @joelgurin.
2​. Plenary Panel:  (Thu Jun 8)
​Title: Data Collaboratives: How to Create Value from Data for Public Problem Solving?
Todd Harbour is the Chief Data Officer (CDO) for New York State, where he orchestrates work to design and implement a data management regime for the Empire State. Todd’s work includes developing a data governance strategy, framework, and roadmap, defining a unified information architecture, realizing master data, coordinating data sharing, and establish a state-wide data analytics community of practice. Prior to this role, Todd was a senior federal government official based in the Washington DC metropolitan area, where he led work to establish data strategies, business frameworks, and data management platforms, which helped provide a reliable basis for answering questions from Congress and organizational leaders. Previously, Todd served as senior vice president at FGM Inc., a software and systems engineering corporation in Northern Virginia. Todd is a certified Project Management Professional (PMP), Program Management Professional (PgMP), Scrum Master (CSM), and Chief Information Officer (CIO) with the Project Management Institute and National Defense University, respectively. Todd is also a certified Data Management Professional (CDMP) and Data Governance and Stewardship Professional (DGSP) with the Data Management Association (DAMA). Todd currently holds 4 graduate degrees in information systems, project management, business administration, and government information leadership.
Natalia Adler is the Data, Research and Policy Planning Specialist at UNICEF HQ, where she’s trying to leverage data science and expertise to tackle complex socioeconomic problems through data collaboratives with the private sector and academia. She has also conceptualized a "Cities for Children" initiative, looking at the intersection of urbanization, climate change and child rights in Latin America. Natalia has previously worked with UNICEF Nicaragua and Mozambique advancing human centered design, lean start-up techniques, entrepreneurial ecosystems, and public finance management for child rights.
Anoush Rima Tatevossian is the former head of Strategic Communications & Partnerships for Global Pulse, an innovation initiative within the Office of the Secretary-General at the United Nations. Global Pulse is focused on advancing the opportunities afforded by big data and real-time analytics for sustainable development and humanitarian action. In her role she helped popularize the concept of “data philanthropy” through a global communications and advocacy campaign, and brokered data-sharing partnerships with social media, mobile and financial industry companies. Previously, she held leadership positions in the NGO sector and holds a B.A. from the College of William & Mary, and is a graduate of the USC Master of Public Diplomacy program.
Amen Ra Mashariki, Ph.D. is the New York City's Chief Analytics Officer and leads the Mayor's Office of Data Analytics (MODA). Dr. Mashariki is an accomplished leader within government, private sector and academia with experience in bringing Big Data processing and analytics for large and complex data management efforts. Previously, Dr. Mashariki served as Chief Technology Officer at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management. Dr. Mashariki holds a Doctor of Engineering from Morgan State University, USA.
Robert Kirkpatrick is the director of United Nations Global Pulse, a flagship innovation initiative of the Secretary-General driving big data revolution for sustainable development and humanitarian action. His work in government, UN agencies, NGOs and the private sector has focused on developing solutions at the intersection of technology, policy and social change. He has spent more than 15 years creating technology tools for business, public health, disaster relief, security coordination, citizen journalism, telemedicine, crisis monitoring, and conflict mediation.
Stefaan Verhulst is Co-Founder and Chief Research and Development Officer of the Governance Laboratory @NYU (GovLab) where he is responsible for building a research foundation on how to transform governance using advances in science and technology. Verhulst’s latest scholarship centers on how technology can improve people’s lives and the creation of more effective and collaborative forms of governance. Specifically, he is interested in the perils and promise of collaborative technologies and how to harness the unprecedented volume of information to advance the public good.
Marijn Janssen is a full Professor in ICT & Governance and chair of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) research group of the Technology, Policy and Management Faculty of Delft University of Technology. Dr. Janssen’s research interests are in the field of orchestration, shared services arrangements, and open and big data and infrastructures. He is Co-Editor-in-Chief of Government Information Quarterly, conference chair of IFIP EGOV series and is chairing mini-tracks at the dg.o, ICEGOV, HICCS and AMCIS conferences. He was ranked as one of the leading e-government researchers in surveys in 2009, 2014 and 2016, and has published over 400 refereed publications.
Theresa A. Pardo, Ph.D. is the director of the Center for Technology in Government at the University at Albany, SUNY and a full research professor in public administration and policy at Rockefeller College. Dr. Pardo is a co-developer of the top-ranked Government Information Strategy and Management concentration at the University of Albany and is past president of the Digital Government Society. Dr. Pardo serves as OpenNY Adviser to New York State’s Governor Andrew Cuomo and is Chair of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s National Advisory Committee. She is a member of the User Working Group of the NASA Socioeconomic Data and Applications Center (SEDAC). Additionally, Dr. Pardo is a member of the Steering Committee of the National Science Foundation funded North East Big Data Hub, an International Advisor to the E-Government Committee for the China Information Association, and serves as an Expert Advisor to the Open Data 500 Project.
Iryna Susha is a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Informatics at Örebro University, a guest researcher at Delft University of Technology, and a visiting scholar at The Governance Lab of New York University. Iryna's current research focus is on data collaboratives and how they can be efficiently used to address societal challenges. Her earlier works on open government, open data, and citizen participation have appeared in various international journals and conferences. 
3. Welcome Speakers (Wed Jun 7)
Louis A. Zacharilla, Co-Founder of Intelligent Community Forum
Louis Zacharilla is a social entrepreneur who is credited with initiating the global Intelligent Community movement. As one of founders of the Intelligent Community Forum he developed the Intelligent Community of the Year Awards program. He speaks to groups of community leaders worldwide to help them understand and implement the best practices of the world’s leading communities. He is the developer of the Top7 and Intelligent Community of the Year Awards programs and guides the strategy for the New York-based think tank’s programs. He was named a judge for the French-based World E-Democracy Awards program, is a member of the Australian-American Dialogue Council, a trustee of the Board of Directors of Walsh University (USA) and recently a member of the board of directors of the METRO New York Library Council.
James Oddo, Staten Island Borough President
James Oddo was elected Staten Island Borough President in November 2013. Prior to his election, he served as the Council Member representing the 50th Council district (Mid-Island and a small portion of Brooklyn) since 1999. He also served as the City Council’s Minority Leader from 2002 to 2013. In that role, he served as a key member of the Council’s leadership team. Oddo authored 19 local laws and brought back more than $165 million to improve his community in various ways. After working 15 years to make it a reality, in the final days of his tenure in the Council, Oddo joined EDC to announce an exciting redevelopment plan to turn the abandoned Farm Colony site into a senior citizen community. This project, one that took so long due to the global economic crisis, best personifies Oddo’s persistence and advocacy on behalf of his community. As Borough President, Oddo is committed to attaining necessary aid for Staten Islanders impacted by Hurricane Sandy. He recognizes the frustration and havoc the situation has caused in their lives and is an advocate for all awaiting resolution from city, state and federal programs. In addition, Oddo is excited to see the waterfront development project for the North Shore become a reality. The project includes the highest observation wheel in the world, outlet shopping, a boutique hotel and residential communities that will transform the former Stapleton homeport and St. George community. Oddo is also keenly aware of other issues facing Staten Islanders every day. He wants to meet the challenges of island living by maximizing waterfront real estate with a fast ferry, reducing commute time for many residents. He also recognizes the need for infrastructure changes to meet the needs of the Island’s 500,000 residents.
Dr. Susan L. Holak, Founding Dean of the School of Business, College of Staten Island
Dr. Susan L. Holak has served as the Founding Dean of the School of Business at the College of Staten Island since its inception in 2013. In this role, she has overseen the construction of the Con Edison Trading Room, the development of graduate and undergraduate curriculum in areas such as business data analytics and the business of healthcare, and the growth of an engaged network of alumni that reaches back sixty years. She formerly served as the Associate Provost for Institutional Effectiveness, and also holds faculty rank as a Professor of Marketing. As Associate Provost, Dr. Holak provided leadership in academic program review, accreditation, assessment, and the promotion of institutional effectiveness throughout the institution. Professor Holak also served as the area chairperson of marketing in the Business Department (2003-2007) and the Director of the Macaulay Honors College of CSI/CUNY (2005-2007). Dr. Holak earned a B.S. in Economics (Magna Cum Laude) from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where she was named to Beta Gamma Sigma, the business honorary society. She received an M.Phil. and Ph.D. in Business from Columbia University.
Gale A. Brewer, The 27th Borough President of Manhattan
Gale A. Brewer is the 27th Borough President of Manhattan, with a role in deciding land-use and zoning issues in the borough, appointment of members to the 12 community boards, and the ability to introduce legislation in the City Council. Since she took office in 2014, her bills to reform the deed restriction process and remove criminal history from initial employment applications have been enacted, and her pre-ULURP ("Uniform Land Use Review Procedure") community planning groups have addressed development issues at the South Street Seaport and in East Midtown. Brewer previously served on the Council for 12 years, serving as Chair of the Technology Committee and the Government Operations Committee. Her legislation guaranteeing paid sick leave for most hourly employees, requiring all City data be published online, and protecting domestic workers from abusive practices-- the first such law in the nation-- has all been enacted. Brewer has an MPA from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and did her undergraduate work at Columbia University and Bennington College. Brewer previously served as Chief of Staff to Council Member Ruth Messinger, NYC Deputy Public Advocate, Director of the city's Federal Office, and Executive Director of Mayor Dinkins' Commission on the Status of Women. She also was Project Manager for the NYC Nonprofits Project at CUNY's Graduate Center and manager of an affordable housing project for the Telesis Corporation.
4. Vietnamese City of One Million Revolutionary Community Keynote (Wed Jun 7)
Viet-Long Nguyen, Director IR & Strategy of the Becamex Group
The keynote presentation will be given by Dr. Viet-Long Nguyen, Director IR & Strategy of the Becamex Group, a state-owned agency in Vietnam. The project is an historic attempt by Vietnam to develop its first Intelligent Community. The Binh Duong initiative will literally develop a city for one million citizens that is brand new. The project will rely on ICF’s six core Indicators.
Joost Helms, the co-director of the Eindhoven International Project Office (EIPO) in The Netherlands
Dr. Long was named Director of the Binh Duong Smart City Office. Presenting with Dr. Long will be Joost Helms, the co-director of the Eindhoven International Project Office (EIPO) in The Netherlands. Eindhoven was ICF’s 2011 Intelligent Community of the Year. The EIPO is mentoring their Vietnamese colleagues in this effort, and working to coordinate government, academic and private investors in what it calls “the triple helix approach.”The region’s planned “triple helix” will include Eastern International University, a new university which will house the region’s first incubator, as well as a new citizen-friendly administration building for its local government. These two are built. The entire project will be completed by 2020, according to Becamex.
Dr. Long and Mr. Helms will discuss how Vietnam has embraced the digital age and has moved toward its aspiration of becoming the nation’s first designated Intelligent Community via the ICF’s Awards process.