Harvard College Project For Asian and International Relations Conference (HPAIR) 2021 Review

My Personal Review of HPAIR 2021

1. Application Process

  • Applied on 9th Jan 2021 on HPAIR website as a Gold Tier Delegate
  • Received my email acceptance to the program on 11th Jan 2021

2. Accessing the conference

There were 2 ways of accessing different keynotes and seminars. Some were hosted on Run The World platform and the others were on Zoom.

Run The World
Reminder email for Zoom

3. During the conference

There will be a host and the host will provide a background of the speakers and ask them a series of questions. After which, they will open the ground for other questions to the speakers as well. Delegates who are interested to ask questions could just send a comment to the host.

Personally, i missed a couple of seminars and keynotes as they were all in a completely different time zone from me. So here are some of my favourite sessions out of those that i managed to attend.

  1. Opening Ceremony (North America + Europe)
  2. Keynote Speaker — Kevin Sneader, CEO of McKinsey & Co
  3. The Uncontrollable Proliferation of Ai: Embracing This Ever-Increasingly Automated World
  4. Keynote Speaker — Brian Wong
  5. Presidential AMA
  6. Keynote Speaker — Hari Nair
  7. Health Equity or Health Equality?

4. After the conference

  • Access to some of the recordings for the sessions for around 1 week
  • Certificate of recognition (Gold tier delegates only)
  • Recommendation letter (Gold tier delegates only)

5. Reflection of my experience

Learn, learn and learn

5 Principles from Mr Hari Nair

  1. Listen more, talk less — The more you listen, the less you talk. It gives us an assessment of what the issues are and how you can help
  2. Find common ground — We have diversity but we also have differences. Find where we can reach common ground
  3. Focus on the job to be done to spot opportunities — Allows you to open more solutions, instead of the one solution that you may have
  4. Deliver wins — Show some small wins
  5. Always focus on mindsets

Before the conference, select sessions that you are the most interested in and prioritize your schedule accordingly

If you missed out those that you are most interested in, you might not get another chance to view the session recording. I wasn’t able to attend the session for Keynote Speakers — Yang Lan, Anla Cheng & Lesly Goh and the recording wasn’t made available since it happened over Zoom.

Watch out for the different time zone

I was a little confused at the start for the opening ceremony as it was hosted during EST timezone. Later on i realized that there were two different opening ceremonies.

Take the chance to network

The program offers 2 interesting networking sessions with other delegates and i would strongly recommend future delegates to try it out even if it’s online.

6. Conclusion

Overall, i thought HPAIR 2021 was excellent as the conference went smoothly on my end. There seemed to be some hiccups due to network along the way, but nothing major. I was able to enjoy most of the sessions that i managed to attend and was very inspired by the content shared by many of the speakers. This was definitely due to the hard work that the HPAIR team did by planning and inviting prominent industry leaders to share their personal experiences and views.

In addition, the planning committee team were dedicated and prompt in their replies as well. They even provided certificates and recommendation letters and i personally felt that these were all presented in a very thoughtful way. So kudos to the HPAIR team and the speakers for this wonderful experience!

My certificate for the conference

I write about new tech that i’ve been exploring recently. I believe in working hard, being kind and trust that amazing things will happen.

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