Social iCon 2011

Cross-Sector Collaboration

In increasingly turbulent times the critical needs of society demand attention from people in all sectors – government, business and social. It will take out-of-the ordinary, innovative efforts to find new ways of addressing emerging challenges.

This year on 9 November, Social iCon, the Lien Centre for Social Innovation’s biennial flagship event, brings together leading global practitioners who will share insights on why and how cross-sector collaboration must work.

Thought Leaders




Aaron Boey, President, Global Denizen™ Brand , Levi Strauss & Co.

Aaron oversees all of LS&Co.’s operations in the Asia Pacific region. He joined the company in September 2005 as vice president and regional managing director responsible for Levi Strauss and Co.’s businesses in Asia, excluding Japan. Aaron has been a passionate advocate of consumers all his professional life. He has built brands, created new brands, grown brands in developed markets and launched brands in new emerging markets. He believes in using keen consumer insights combined with market and product innovation in delivering superior and differentiated solutions to consumers, and in doing so, deliver higher shareholder value. Aaron is a member of the company’s worldwide leadership team, which sets the company’s global strategic direction.




Andrea Coleman, Director, Global Innovation Academy , Young Foundation

Andrea Coleman is a Director working on the Young Foundation’s Youth Transitions and International practice areas. She has led the design and launch of the Global Innovation Academy to build the skills and capacity needed for fast and effective innovation to meet social needs. Andrea has worked for more than fifteen years in the fields of education and social services. Prior to joining the Young Foundation, she was an executive at FEGS Health and Human Services System in New York – one of the largest non-profit health and human services providers in the United States with 4,000+ employees and serving 100,000 New Yorkers annually.




Ann Lavin, Head, Public Policy & Government Affairs, Google Southeast Asia

Ann Lavin is the head of Public Policy & Government Affairs, Google Southeast Asia. She was previously Senior Advisor with McLarty Associates, as well as Vice-President of the US-ASEAN Business Council. She will share about how Google Maps is focusing on map making for planning and disaster management, illustrating how technology has enabled social needs to be met, whether in a crisis situation or in overcoming health problems and disabilities.




Professor Arnoud De Meyer, President, Singapore Management University

Prior to becoming President of SMU, Arnoud De Meyer was Professor of Management Studies at the University of Cambridge (UK) and Director of Judge Business School. He was also a visiting professor at the Universities of Kiel (Germany), Ghent and Antwerp (Belgium) and Waseda and Keio University (Japan). Before joining Judge Business School , Professor De Meyer was associated for 23 years with INSEAD as a professor and as Dean for the MBA programme, Executive Education and the Euro Asia Centre. He was also the founding Dean of INSEAD’s Asia Campus in Singapore. Professor De Meyer has been a part-time professor at the University of Antwerp and Ghent in Belgium, and was a visiting professor at the University of Kiel, Waseda University in Tokyo, Keio University in Tokyo, and the Birla Institute of Technology in India.




Charlie Leadbeater, Innovation & Creativity Thinker

Charles Leadbeater is a leading authority on innovation and creativity. He has advised companies, cities and governments around the world on innovation strategy and drew on that experience in writing his latest book We-think: the power of mass creativity, which charts the rise of mass, participative approaches to innovation from science and open source software, to computer games and political campaigning. In 2005 Charles was ranked by Accenture, the management consultancy, as one of the top management thinkers in the world. A past winner of the prestigious David Watt prize for journalism, Charles was profiled by the New York Times in 2004 for generating one of the best ideas of the year, the rise of the activist amateur, outlined in his report The Pro-Am Revolution.




Christian Bason, Director, MindLab

Christian Bason is a Master of Science in Political Science, and is the director of MindLab. He has previously worked on the development of public institutions at Rambøll Management. His latest book Leading Public Sector Innovation was published in autumn 2010. MindLab is a cross-ministerial innovation unit which involves citizens and businesses in creating new solutions for society. It works with the civil servants in three parent ministries: the Ministry of Economic and Business Affairs, the Ministry of Taxation and the Ministry of Employment. MindLab is instrumental in helping the ministry’s key decision-makers and employees view their efforts from the outside-in, to see them from a citizen’s perspective. We use this approach as a platform for co-creating better ideas.




Christopher Beshouri, Managing Principal Philippines, McKinsey & Company

Christopher Beshouri heads McKinsey and Company’s practice in the Philippines and also plays a regional role in Asia for McKinsey’s overall Asia practice. He is a member of the Public Sector Initiative, a practice area focused on serving government and not-for-profit organizations in a range of sectors. He has worked with a variety of firms in the Philippines , focusing on consumer demographics, change management and adapting business models to serve low-income consumers. Mr. Beshouri has served firms on transformation initiatives, performance benchmarking and efficiency, organization redesign, and mindset and behavior initiatives to enable major organizational change. Mr. Beshouri has a joint degree in economics and public policy at Michigan State University and a Master’s degree in Public and International Affairs from Princeton University.




Geoff Mulgan, Chief Executive, National Endowment for Science Technology and the Arts

From 2004-2011 Geoff was the first Chief Executive of the Young Foundation, which became a leading centre for social innovation, combining research, creation of new ventures and practical projects. Between 1997 and 2004 Geoff had various roles in the UK government including director of the Government’s Strategy Unit and head of policy in the Prime Minister’s office. Before that he was the founder and director of the think-tank Demos. He has also been Chief Adviser to Gordon Brown MP; a lecturer in telecommunications; an investment executive; and a reporter on BBC TV and radio. He is an adviser to many governments around the world, and has been a board member of the Work Foundation, the Health Innovation Council, Political Quarterly and the Design Council, and chair of Involve.




Lalitha Vaidyanathan, Managing Director, FSG

Lalitha currently leads the US Health impact area at FSG, in addition to leading the firm’s efforts in India . Lalitha started her consulting career with McKinsey & Company, advising financial services and technology companies on a variety of business issues. She subsequently co-founded and ran a venture-backed technology company in San Francisco . Since 2002, Lalitha has worked in the social sector as Program Director for OpNet Community Ventures, a technology workforce development organization targeted at low-income young adults, and as an independent consultant with clients in the areas of community health and global poverty alleviation.




Laurence Brahm, Founder, Himalayan Consensus

Laurence J. Brahm is a global activist, international crisis mediator, political economist, and author. A lawyer and economist by profession, during the 1990s he served as an advisor to the central banks of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, guiding them on financial reforms in their transition from socialism, and to Mongolia on enterprise restructuring. Author of more than 20 books on the Asian region, Brahm has covered a wide spectrum of topics in his writings. Brahm was a columnist and commentator for Hong Kong ‘s South China Morning Post and for ReviewAsia magazine. Currently, Brahm focuses most of his energy on the Himalayan Consensus Institute and the African Consensus Resolution. Brahm founded the NGO Shambhala.




Laurence Lien, Chairman, Lien Foundation

Laurence Lien is CEO of the National Volunteer & Philanthropy Centre, Acting CEO of the Community Foundation of Singapore and Chairman of the Lien Foundation. Prior to this, Laurence served in the Administrative Service, rotating through the Ministries of Finance, Community Development, Youth and Sports, Home Affairs, and Education. He is also Deputy Chairman of the Caritas Social and Community Council and Deputy Chairman of Lien Aid.




Liak Teng Lit, CEO, Khoo Teck Puat Hospital

Mr Liak was the CEO of Alexandra Hospital from October 2000 to July 2010,  Changi General Hospital from January 1997 to January 2000 and Toa Payoh Hospital from February 1992 to December 1996. A pharmacist by training, he was involved in the restructuring of major hospitals including The National University Hospital , Kandang Kerbau Hospital and Singapore General Hospital. Mr Liak serves on the boards of NTUC First Campus, NTUC Healthcare, Pathlight School, NorthLight School and The Advisory Panel of the School of Information Systems at the Singapore Management University. He is the Chairman of Water Networks, the Public Hygiene Council, the Advisory Board of Strategic Technology Management Institute of NUS and an active Councillor in the South West Community Development Council and Chairman of the Environment & Health Functional Committee.




Simon Chadwick, CEO, Asian Venture Philanthropy Network

Simon is Chief Executive Officer of AVPN which is building a venture philanthropy community across Asia. He was previously a partner at a global private equity fund placement group and founded his own private equity advisory firm. Before that he worked for the Schroder Group for 12 years in a range of marketing, business development and management roles. He worked on a pro bono basis at Impetus Trust in 2005 where he supported the fund raising and business development of this pioneering, London-based venture philanthropy fund. He has previously lived and worked in Asia for 8 years. He has an MBA from IMD, an MA from SOAS (University of London ) and an MA from Oxford University.




Sonal Shah, Former Director, White House of Social Innovation and Civic Participation

Sonal Shah is former head of the White House Domestic Policy Council’s Office of Social Innovation and Civic Participation. She also served on President Obama’s Transition Board overseeing the Technology, Innovation, Government Reform working group. Before joining the White House, Shah managed and implemented two of Google.org’s global development initiatives.  The first initiative focused on increasing transparency and openness in East Africa and India .  The second initiative focused on fostering and growing small and medium sized enterprises worldwide, including creating an investment fund, developing new innovative models for gathering credit information, and investing in prizes and challenges. Shah also co-founded a non-profit, Indicorps, which offers fellowships for Indian-Americans to work on development projects in India . She is an Aspen Crown Fellow and a Next Generation Fellow.




Sushmita Ghosh, President Emeritus, Ashoka

After completing a five-year term as President of Ashoka, Sushmita continues as a member of Ashoka’s Leadership Team, and Chair of Changemakers which she founded. A former journalist who served as Research Director and Executive Director of Maneka Gandhi’s national Indian news magazine Surya from 1979 to 1982, Sushmita served as Ashoka’s country representative for India from 1989 to 1997. During that time, she helped Ashoka launch its new programs in Latin America and direct its European fundraising efforts. She founded Changemakers in 1992, which she evolved from a magazine for social entrepreneurship to an online platform for open source problem-solving. Sushmita also leads Ashoka’s Global Academy of Social Entrepreneurship that recognizes and connects the top tier of the world’s social and business entrepreneurs. She serves on the boards and councils of several global and Indian organizations.




Dr Tan Chi Chiu, Chairman, Lien Centre for Social Innovation

Chi Chiu is a gastroenterologist and Managing Director of Gastroenterology & Medicine International in Singapore. He has been deeply involved in the medical, youth development, and community service scene for several decades. He volunteers with several nonprofit organizations. Besides his chairmanship of the Lien Centre for Social Innovation he is also a director of SATA CommHealth, Make-A-Wish-Foundation Singapore, and National Youth Achievement Awards. He is an elected member of the Singapore Medical Council and Chairman of the Medical Ethics Committee. He was previously Executive Director of the Singapore International Foundation and has won numerous Singaporean and international military and civilian awards for his global humanitarian, community, and youth work. He is a keen observer of and commentator on the social arena.




Vijay Pratap Singh Aditya, Chairman, CEO, Ekgaon Technologies

Vijay Pratap Singh Aditya is an Ashoka Fellow. His social enterprise Ekgaon Technologies is creating technology platform’s to provide financial, health, and agriculture services, to rural customers. As more and more companies compete for the “bottom of the pyramid” markets in rural India , Vijay’s technological solutions force private companies to compete fairly and offer better services to their rural customers. In return, Vijay’s platform offers these companies the aggregated consumer information they need to develop stronger and cost-effective products and services. Vijay’s enterprise and vision are transforming the way rural producers compete in increasingly globalised markets and are able to increase their incomes and provide for their families.




Vishnu Swaminathan, Director, Full Economic Citizenship and Housing For All Programmes, Ashoka India

Vishnu joins Ashoka with more than 14 years of experience as entrepreneur and innovator. He started two IT based companies in Singapore in the areas of financial transactions and animation technology. Following acquisition of one of the companies, he moved to India to head a leadership school based in Pune, where he led the school’s social effort by creating a independent Centre for Social Development. Ashoka’s Full Economic Citizenship Initiative is promoting a new way of thinking about housing for the poor, one that seeks to enable business-social alliances or Hybrid Value Chains to develop the products and the distribution channels to serve these currently marginalised markets better.

We invite business, civil society organizations, the public sector and all interested changemakers to join us to “Connect, Collaborate and Co-Create”. Please click here to register.


Pricing structure for Social iCon 2011:

Type SGD Notes
Public Sector $790.00 Government employees, with the exception of school staff. This category also includes donors and funders. Applies if participant is attending in their professional capacity, or if their organisation is sponsoring their attendance.
Private Sector $790.00 Employees & owners of enterprises, except social enterprises. Applies if participant is attending in their professional capacity, or if their organisation is sponsoring their attendance.
People Sector $490.00 Staff and volunteers of registered charities, NPOs, social enterprises, schools, and interested individuals attending in their personal capacity.

All fees listed are inclusive of 7% GST.


Group Package

For every four persons that register from the same organisation, only three need to pay the conference fees. The fourth person can participate in Social iCon for free. If your organisation would like to apply for this package, please email the Lien Centre at liencentre@smu.edu.sg