Prepared by: Chun Che Lance Fung, Chair for IEEE R10 Educational Activities Committee 2020

At the time of writing this article, 2020 is drawing to a close and this serves as a reflection and summary of the work from the IEEE Region 10 Educational Activities Committee throughout the year.

These achievements would not have been possible without the dedicated services from members of the committee: Prof. Zuhaina Zakaria, A/Prof. Supavadee Aramvith, Prof. Yoot Khuan Lee, Dr. Iwan Kustiawan, Ms. Muhfizaturrahmah, Prof. Gao Yun An, Prof. Shaikh Fattah, Dr. Dall’Armi-Stoks, Giuseppina, Dr. Luo Sha, and in particular, Mr. Aravindhan Anbazhagan and Ms. Purva Ekatpure for their help in the promotion of R10 educational activities, and running of webinars in the past months.

At the beginning of 2020, the Committee launched the R10 EAC Challenge and it received overwhelming response. After careful consideration by the members of the Committee, Winner and Runner-up were granted to IEEE Hong Kong Section and the IEEE SB NIT Durgapur respectively in the Pre-University Category; and the IEEE PES Malaysia Chapter and the IEEE University of Malaya SB respectively in the University Category. Eight other OU’s also received Commendation Support for their proposals.

With regard to the R10 Outstanding Awards, it was a difficult task to choose from the number of excellent nominations. The choice of the judges finally settled on IEEE Education Society Chapter, Hyderabad Section, and Mohammad Hafiz Ismail of Malaysia Section for the Group and Individual Awards respectively.

When the lockdown and mobility restrictions began to affect all nations in the Region, 2020 IEEE President, Professor Toshio Fukuda and IEEE R10 Director, Professor Akinori Nishihara initiated the Project Reaching Locals to encourage R10 OU’s to make educational resources available to the community in local languages. Many OU’s in the Region acted swiftly and conducted numerous activities in the form of Webinars, videos, radio broadcasts, interviews, production of subtitles for IEEE flagship events, Workshops, Hackathon, MOOC and a range of innovative activities in countries such as Japan, India, China, Pakistan, Indonesia, Bangladesh, Malaysia and Hong Kong SAR. Languages used have included Japanese, Bengali, Malay, Hindi, Telugu, Urdu, Malayalam, Sindhi, Kannada, Gujarati and Chinese. Based on the submitted reports, it is exciting to learn that many thousands in the community have attended the events, and viewing of the recorded sessions on social media and different channels are continuing.

R10 EAC also initiated the R10 EA Virtual Social Media Challenge to encourage participation and promotion of IEEE EA on social media. Awards were granted to Akhya Katiyar (UP section) in the Popular Category, and Christian Innoval (Philippines Section) and Mallelu Sai Prashanth (Hyderabad Section) in the Innovative Category.

A total of four webinars/forum have also been conducted and facilitated by R10 EAC on 20th June 2020 – “IEEE EA Resources and Getting Involved”; 24th July 2020 – “Launch of Project Reaching Locals”; 8th August 2020 – “IEEE Code of Ethics & Global Initiative on Ethics of Autonomous & Intelligent Systems” and on 20th September 2020 – R10 SYWL Congress with a session on updates and presentations from several sections (see report at IEEE 2020 SYWL, EA Track)

The IEEE 2021 R10 EAC will be chaired by Professor Preeti Bajaj and she has lined up great plans for the region on educational activities, just watch this space! I wish you all a prosperous and safe 2021 and thanks again to all R10 EAC members, volunteers and participants who have contributed towards the educational goals of IEEE. You have helped advancing technology for the benefits of humanity!