Kern Sharma / Sun File Photo

Cornell will host its fourth annual TEDxCornell conference in Statler Auditorium.

April 26, 2018

TEDxCornell to Host ‘Eclectic’ Fourth Conference

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Cornell will host its fourth independent Technology, Entertainment and Design conference at the Statler Auditorium on May 6, celebrating diverse achievements and ideas among Cornell community members.

This will be the largest TEDxCornell event to date, according to the TEDxCornell website. Though previous years’ conferences were built around a singular theme, this year’s event assembles an “eclectic” group of individuals from within the Cornell faculty, the website said.

TED is an organization that holds conferences focused on providing a platform for “ideas worth spreading.” Since 1984, TED events have garnered over a billion views worldwide for their thousands of taped, 18-minute talks, according to the TED website.

The Cornell event’s lineup will feature seven speakers, hailing from departments across the University.

Renee T. Alexander ’74, associate dean of students and senior advisor to the dean, will speak about her work regarding campus climate. Alexander works to facilitate discussion across the spectrum of Cornell communities. She won the Perkins Prize in 2017, a prize awarded by Cornell, for her work on the “Breaking Bread Initiative,” which brings participants together across differences for a meal and conversation.

Prof. Itai Cohen, physics, will focus his talk on attempting to understand “out-of-equilibrium behaviors,” such as the coordination of dance movements at events from tango to heavy metal.

With degrees in electrical engineering and computer science and several published books, Prof. Shimon Edelmen, psychology, will speak about “how the realization that the brain is a virtual reality engine can help us make a case for human ethics.”

Best-selling author and emeritus Prof. T. Colin Campbell M.S. ’58, nutritional sciences, will address what he says is the neglect that nutrition science programs receive from the medical field. Campbell has done extensive research on how food and nutrition affects the development of cancer.

Prof. Drew Margolin, communications, will address the motivations and content of online discourse via social media, something that is “not well understood,” according to the website brief. This lecture will explore how “accountability, credibility and legitimacy” play a role in online discourse.

Prof. Ifeoma Ajunwa, organizational behavior, whose work has been featured in the New York Times, the Harvard Business Review, The Atlantic, the Guardian and more, will speak on the “controversies of ethics and technology in modern workplace management.”

Prof. Susan Fleming M.S. ’08 Ph.D. ’10, hotel administration, will address the lack of women in U.S. leadership positions, drawing from her experience on Wall Street. She is an advocate for women’s advancement and has served on the board of six public companies and both private and non-profit boards, according to the website.

The event will be held in the Statler Auditorium on May 6, and full-price and student-discount tickets can be purchased on the TEDxCornell website.