The 10th IEEE International Conference on Application of Information and Communication Technologies (AICT2016) held at Baku- Azerbaijan

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The 10th IEEE International Conference on Application of Information and Communication Technologies (AICT2016), was held in Qafqaz University Baku- Azerbaijan during 12-14 October 2016. Objective of the AICT2016 International Conference was to bring together business people, researchers, scientists, software architects, and industry professionals to discuss innovative ideas and diverse topics on next generation of information technologies and services. The conference aimed at attracting researchers from academic and industrial institutions and practitioners from industry, addressing business and technical issues, challenges, solutions, and technologies in building applications, complete solutions and ICT-based services.

Co-organizers of the conference were; Ministry of Communication and High Technologies of Azerbaijan, Ministry of Education of Azerbaijan, Qafqaz University, Baku State University, Lomonosov Moscow State University Baku branch, Baku Higher Oil School, Azerbaijan Technical University, University Malaysia Sabah, Institute of Information Technology of ANAS, Institute of Control Systems of ANAS, ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) and UNESCO Institute for Information Technologies in Education (IITE), under the sponsorship of Nar Mobile and DELL EMC, with support of IEEE Azerbaijan Joint Chapter and technically sponsored by Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

More than 80 experts from 23 countries including ECO member states and Russia participated in the conference. President ECO Science Foundation Prof. Dr. Manzoor Hussain Soomro spoke in the Inaugural Session and was also one of the plenary speakers in the conference. Dr. Soomro while speaking in the opening session said that, “ICT plays a major role of economic growth and it is now the need to time for the developing/underdeveloped world to invest in ICT and STI sector to meet the challenges of the world”. Focusing of UN SDGS 2030 he added that, “ECO region along with other states had the capacity to harness science, technology and innovation together meet the goals of the SDGs”

President ECOSF made a key note presentation entitled, “ECO Science Foundation- A Catalyst for Promotion of STI in ECO Region”. He firstly introduced ECO Science Foundation, its aims & objectives, activities, programmes as well as strategic steps and partners. Dr. Soomro stressed upon the importance of investing in Children via Inquiry Based Science Education (IBSE)  as well as in research and development in the science, technology and innovation (STI) sector for economic development and to achieve the SDGs. This requires harmonization of STI-ICT policies of member countries of ECO with a focus on the Digital solutions to overcome youth unemployment by building the capacity of children and youth.  “Equipping young people with digital skills will open the doors to a range of jobs and business opportunities for them”, he added.

Dr. Soomro in his presentation shared the initiative taken by ECOSF in ICTs and SDGs nexus- The “AppIdea2R” Contest. It has been designed by ECOSF for empowering and mobilising youth and accelerating the implementation of sustainable solutions in the community at national and international levels. The Contest aims to promote development of software applications on UN SDGs 2030, related to one or more of the Sustainable Development Goals for web, personal computer, mobile handheld device, console, SMS, or any software platform broadly available to the public. The App submitted in the Contest should address at least one of the 17 SDGs, either for Awareness creation OR Contribute to progress towards meeting the SDGs. It will be an open opportunity for university students of the 10 ECO countries; Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Turkey, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan to become part of an international team to solve the social problems as well as win prizes.

After the opening and plenary sessions, Technical sessions of AICT2016 focused on the scientific topics categorized as: Big Data Management and Application, Data Mining and Data Engineering, Cyber Security Issues, Latest Trends in ICT Application, Communication, network and hardware, ICT in Business Administration, Finance and Economy, ICT in Governance and Government Policy Making, ICT in Education, Humanities, Social Sciences and Research, ICT in Medicine and Health Care. The conference provided an excellent opportunity for participants to network among themselves.

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