Keynote Speakers

Industry 4.0 and Circular Economy Practices: A New Era Business Strategies for Environmental Sustainability

Prof. Syed Abdul Rehman Khan
Department of Supply Chain and Big Data, Business Research and Service Institute, USA

Amid rising environmental concerns, Industry 4.0 and Blockchain technology (BCT) are transforming circular economy (CE) practices and prevailing business models. Recognize the same; this study examines the role of blockchain technology in circular CE practices; and their impact on eco-environmental performance, which influences organizational performance. The study adopted PLS-SEM modeling for testing hypotheses, this study provides three key findings. First, BCT significantly improves the circular economy practices (circular procurement, circular design, recycling, and re-manufacturing). Second, CE practices help improve firms' environmental performance and stimulate their financial performance. Third, higher eco-environmental performance significantly boosts organizational performance. This study set-out the foundations for participating countries/firms that simultaneously achieve financial and sustainable goals by integrating blockchain technology in circular economy practices.

Short Bio:
Dr Syed Abdul Rehman Khan is an expert of Supply Chain and Logistics Management. Dr Khan achieved his CSCP—Certified Supply Chain Professional certificate from the U.S.A. and completed his Postdoctoral Fellowship from Tsinghua University. Dr. Khan has more than twelve years’ core experience of supply chain and logistics at industry and academic levels. He has attended several international conferences and also has been invited as a keynote speaker in different countries. He has published 120+ scientific research papers in different well-renowned international peer-reviewed journals (SSCI/SCI and ABS listed) and conferences, including couple of research paper indexed in Essential Science Indicators (ESI). Dr Khan is the authored of 10 books related to the sustainability in supply chain and business operations. He is a regular contributor to conferences and workshops around the world.

ICT in Technical and Vocational Education: Cross-validation of the TAG Model

Associate Prof. A.Y.M. Atiquil Islam
Department of Education Information Technology, East China Normal University, China
Visiting Professor
School of Education, Shanghai International Studies University, China

Information and communication technologies (ICTs) are becoming the sole means of technical and vocational education used to develop emerging teachers’ and students’ practical and professional skills. This presentation addresses the rapid introduction of educational technologies in China and the strong push to use new technologies in Chinese technical and vocational training. It also explores practitioners’ varied responses to new educational technologies and their uneven adoption of new tools. As such, this presentation will exhibit how to apply Islam’s (2016) Technology Adoption and Gratification (TAG) model to explore technical and vocational college teachers’ adoption of and gratification in using ICTs for teaching and research. Moreover, it will explain how to cross-validate the TAG model to identify the moderating effect of male and female teachers in technical and vocational education. Finally, it will teach practitioners how to contribute to theoretical, methodical and practical understandings of the use of ICT in technical and vocational education.

Short Bio:
Dr A.Y.M. Atiquil Islam is an Associate Professor at the Department of Education Information Technology of the East China Normal University. He is also a Visiting Professor at the School of Education of the Shanghai International Studies University. He obtained a multidimensional PhD degree by combining two faculties, namely, Education and Computer Science & Information Technology at the Institute of Graduate Studies, University of Malaya. In his field of specialization, he developed and validated three models, namely, Technology Adoption and Gratification (TAG) Model, Technology Satisfaction Model (TSM) and Online Database Adoption and Satisfaction (ODAS) Model. He has had almost 17 years of experience in academia, industry and business. He has published nearly 60 papers in first-class international journals and conferences. He has also delivered keynote addresses, invited speeches, and guest lectures many times in the past four years. He is the Editor in Chief of Journal of Innovative Technology in Education, Associate Editor of the International Journal of Smart Technology and Learning, and Article Editor of SAGE Open (SSCI). His research interests are in the arena of Assessment of Educational Technologies, ICT in Higher Education, Quantitative Modeling, Technical and Vocational Education and Training, Information Science and Artificial Intelligence.

A DNA Nanodevice Simultaneously Activating the EGFR and Integrin for Enhancing Cytoskeletal Activity and Cancer Cell Treatment

Dr. Baig, Mirza Muhammad Faran Ashraf
Biomedical engineering and bio-functional materials, The University of Hong Kong

Cell-surface receptors (e.g., EGFR and integ-rin) and their interactions play determining roles in signal transduction and cytoskeletal activation, which affect cell attachment/detachment, invasion, motility, metastasis (intra-cellular), and cell−cell signaling. For instance, the interactions between the EGFR and integrin (α6β4) may cause increased mechanical force and shear stress via enhanced cytoskeleton activation. Here, we design a DNA nanodevice (DNA-ND) that can simultaneously target the EGFR and integrin receptors on the caveolae. The piconewton (pN) forces in response to the EGFR−integrin coactivation can be sensed upon the unfolding of the DNA hairpin structure on the side arm of the device via changes of the fluorescence and plasmonic signals. We find that simultaneous activation of EGFR−integrin receptors causes enhanced signal transduction, contractions of the cells, and initiation of the biochemical pathways, thus resulting in a change of the cell division and endocytosis/exocytosis processes that affect the cell proliferation/apoptosis. The DNA-ND further enables us to visualize the cointernalization and degradation of the receptors by lysosomes, providing a novel approach toward bioimaging and mechano-pharmacology.

Cell surface receptors, EGFR and integrin, caveolae, cytoskeleton, pN forces, DNA nanodevice (DNA-ND)

Short Bio:
Dr. Baig, MMFA is a registered pharmacist, and currently a post-doctoral fellow (PDF) at the Faculty of Dentistry, The University of Hong Kong, under the supervision of Professor Dr. Chengfei Zhang. He received his Doctor of Pharmacy (PharmD), and MPhil (Pharmaceutical Chemistry) degrees from the Faculty of Pharmacy, Bahauddin Zakariya University (BZU), Pakistan, and a Ph.D. degree from the School of Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Nanjing University (NJU), China under the supervision of Prof. Dr. Xing-Hua Xia. During his PharmD research, he worked on a clinical trial in the Cardiology Ward of Nishtar Hospital, Multan, Pakistan (2009-2011). Later, he worked as a “Research Assistant” on a breast cancer project in the Department of Molecular Biology & Biotechnology, BZU, Pakistan (2011-2012). His task was to analyze genetic polymorphism in the DNA extracted from the WBCs of the freshly collected blood samples. Then, he joined “Novartis Pharma, Pakistan” as a “Medical Information Officer” in the cardiovascular group (2012-2015) and won the “National Performance Award” in 2015. After that, he switched to academia in 2015 and worked as a “Lecturer of Pharmacology and Biochemistry” in Multan Medical & Dental College, University of Health Sciences, Lahore, Pakistan. He also taught Pharmacology and Physiology as a visiting lecturer at China Pharmaceutical University, and Nanjing Medical University in summer 2019. His MPhil research was focused on DNA Nanotechnology, Polymers, Material Chemistry, Drug Delivery, Biomedical Engineering, and Molecular Pharmaceutics. During his PhD, he won an excellent PhD student award in 2019 and worked on MechanoPharmacology, Advanced DNA NanoTherapeutics, Developmental Biology, Neuroscience, Biophysics, Bio-sensing, Bio-imaging, and Diagnostics. Currently, his research focus is designing DNA-based novel functional & bio-active nanomaterials to apply in Restorative Dentistry, Oral Microbiology & Oncology, Regenerative Therapeutics, and Stem Cells Research. He has published 50 peer-reviewed articles, and 3 book chapters including 19 publications as a first author in prestigious biomedical and nanotechnology journals such as Nano Letters (ACS, USA), indexed in Harvard University Library Press, USA. He has an H-index of 12, and a total of 425 citations (google scholar) with a cumulative impact factor of 173.


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