Stony Brook University

12/11/2023 | News release | Distributed by Public on 12/11/2023 15:31

CEWIT2023 Conference Looks to a Smarter World

The CEWIT2023 conference included an exhibitor showcase, along with panels and presentations on issues relating to healthcare, sustainability, and climate.

Since 2003, the Center of Excellence in Wireless and Information Technology (CEWIT) at Stony Brook University has presented premier forums of cutting-edge research as well as the exchange and transfer of emerging technologies and innovative applications.

In November, the Center hosted CEWIT2023, the 19th International Conference on Emerging Technologies for a Smarter World. This year's theme was "The Innovation Edge: Technologies for a Healthier, Safer, and More Sustainable Future," with panels and presentations focusing on artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, cybersecurity, the Internet of Things (IoT), and virtual reality, augmented realith and extended reality (VR/AR/XR) as they relate to healthcare, sustainability, and climate issues.

"This year's conference brought together an extremely diverse group of speakers representing academia, multiple industry sectors, and government," said Miguel Garcia-Diaz, interim vice president for research. "Across a day of exciting presentations and energizing panel discussions devoted to charting the course for the future of technology, the participants shared ideas and embraced the common goal of unleashing the power of technology to create a healthier, safer, more equitable, and more sustainable world."

Miguel Garcia-Diaz, Stony Brook University interim vice president for research.

The conference focused on relevant, global themes including generative AI, understanding and remediating the warming climate, and effective healthcare delivery.

"These themes are also align with our research priorities, and the conference presented an opportunity to develop partnerships to advance the university's strategic goals," said Garcia-Diaz. "I applaud [CEWIT center director] Rong Zhao and the organizing committee for putting together an extremely successful event."

"The CEWIT2023 conference brought together academia and industry to create a dynamic intersection of ideas and expertise," said Zhao. "With the transformative potential of generative AI on everyone's mind, we brought in world leading experts who addressed the urgent need for open data in tackling a warming planet, and how this research can be enabled and accelerated using AI technologies. Our speakers highlighted the innovative strides in healthcare delivery being achieved with personalized medicine, and the strong impact that point-of-care clinical applications can have."

Manoj Mahajan, associate professor in the College of Business and senior research scientist at CEWIT, moderated a panel discussion called Driving the Future of Cybersecurity including members of the defense industry and entrepreneurs with backgrounds in military special operations, defense systems, AI, machine learning, and natural language processing.

"CEWIT is working on expanding its work in the cybersecurity and national security domains," said Mahajan. "We discussed the need for the future of cybersecurity in three different focus areas: hardware, from chips and boards that have fail-safes or don't work outside of geo-fenced locations; the encrypted software that run medical or military systems on different protocols; and physical security such as the grid, power cables, plugs, antennas, and military communications systems that need to be protected from corporate saboteurs or nefarious actors."

CEWIT2023 included a panel on sustainability.

Mahajan believes the future of cybersecurity will continue to expand and become equally about the identification and authorization of a user and their access as they interact with data within physically defined locations.

"Future cybersecurity may require out-of-the-box ideas becoming the norm, such as chips that melt down if they're taken outside of a location to prevent theft of data in a medical, business, or military environment," he said. "It's imperative that our students are educated in many disciplines where cyber security plays a large role, from our College of Business Innovation Center supporting entrepreneurs to our Medical School."

Gerald Kelly, chief information officer for Stony Brook University Hospital, was an expert on a panel addressing AI in healthcare. "Technology and data have revolutionized the healthcare industry," he said. "AI in healthcare offers countless opportunities to improve the quality of healthcare and positively impact patient outcomes, but AI cannot replicate the human element that is so prevalent in healthcare delivery and providing an exemplary experience for the patients and their families."

Softheon, Inc., a leader in health benefit exchange solutions, and W3LL, a technology company that simplifies health insurance through automation, co-sponsored the conference. Both are headquartered in Stony Brook's CEWIT building.

Carl Lejuez, executive vice president and provost.

"By integrating AI into healthcare systems, we can enhance patient care, streamline administrative processes, and ultimately lead society towards healthier lives more efficiently and effectively," said Eugene Sayan, CEO of Softheon and W3LL. "In partnership with Stony Brook University and CEWIT, Softheon and W3LL are committed to pioneering these transformative solutions by leveraging AI to turn challenges into opportunities for a healthier tomorrow."

Peter Donnelly, associate vice president for Technology Partnerships in the Office of Economic Development said the conference emphasized the importance of bringing ideas and people together to learn, collaborate, and solve challenging global issues. "With an outstanding group of speakers, panelists, and participants, we accomplished all three," he said. "Coming out of the conference, we are very excited about concrete collaborations for continuing work - a growing relationship with the IEEE, long-standing partners Softheon and Zebra, and developing relationships with W3LL and other companies, including startups with exciting new ideas. While the challenges are significant, after the conference, I'm optimistic in looking forward toward solutions."

"CEWIT's annual conferences are a premier forum for presentations about cutting-edge research in industries of the future, as well as for exchange and transfer of emerging technologies to commercial use," said Carl Lejuez, executive vice president and provost at Stony Brook. "As a public flagship and premier research institution, one of the things we do best is to serve as a convener and conduit for advancing knowledge and discovery for the greater good. I am grateful to CEWIT for their leadership in hosting these important events."

- Robert Emproto