Round tables.

Another new feature of SABF’s 6th Edition was the Round Table. During this plenary, current leaders from different issues and areas, gathered around and exposed their views and main ideas with regards the topics dealt in the event. The following article presents the speakers involved, which were Federico Imposti Huerta (Country Manager and Sales Director of Amadeus Argentina); Bernardo Kosacoff (Academic director of CECyD, ITBA-UdeSA); Javier Braun (General Director of Avaya for South Cone); Felix Peña (Specialist on International Economic Relations and Economic Integration); Ernesto Taboada (Executive Director at the Commercial Chamber of Argentina and China); Faustino Arias (CEO, CALSA); Krishna Sundaresan (Manager of CRISIL Irevna); Marcos Golfari (Regional director of Ogilvy & Mather Latinoamérica); Tulio Calderón (Vice-president of Proyectos Aeroespaciales INVAP) and Guillermo Laborato (CEO for Latinoamérica & Director of Strategic Planning at DOW).

The SABF activities of the second day ended after the Round Table was over. After that, all participants enjoyed a casual dinner with pizza party. Keep following the blog coverage of the South American Business Forum and stay tuned!

Discover the Domain World & Win an iPod!

SABF’s Benefactor, InterNetX, has decided to challenge this year’s participants with a contest very near to both this edition’s subtopics and its own area of expertise: internet and the 2.0 society.

InterNetX GmbH, located in Regensburg, Germany, was founded in 1998. The company offers the essentials for any webhosting provider such as domains, network connections and webspace. InterNetX is a technical and strategic partner, operating for numerous global players in the background. With more than 3 million managed domains and about 1,600 physical servers, InterNetX is one of the largest service providers for professional users and resellers on the international marketplace.

We share the proposed challenge below.

After university, you decide to found a startup business. The business model is clear to you and you want to register the appropriate domain for it. Apart from your own ccTLD, you decide to register a domain name under .CO, .NET or .ORG. Explain your business model and why you would choose this TLD. Also, explain what you expect from your online presence and what you would do to maximize the outcome / profit of your domain name.

Please share your idea with us. To enter for the prize draw, submit your proposal as a PDF on max. 2 pages by July 24 to the provided email. Please don’t forget to mention which of the 3 TLDs you would choose and for what reason. Competition is open to SABF participants only and only one proposal is permitted per person. If you come up with a great idea, we might want to interview you. Please indicate if you are not willing to do so. This will have no effect on your winning chances.

Every day, more than 10,000 companies around the world make .net their domain of choice. Show the world your potential with a .net domain name.


.ORG is the domain for organizations, individuals, and companies to mobilize their communities, achieve a common goal, or pursue a shared cause.


.CO is the global and recognizable web address for launching great ideas. Bring your ideas to life on .CO today. www.Opportunity.CO


If you are a 2011 SABF participant, do not let this opportunity pass you by! Submissions are accepted until July 24

Business Today International Conference

Because we know SABFers are always looking for opportunities to debate and act, we would like to recommend you to participate in the 2011 edition of the Business Today International Conference. This event is going to be held in November, in New York City, United States. This year’s main topic is Pieces of the Puzzle: Putting Together the Global Economy.

As the global economy recovers from the financial crisis, businesses now face a great challenge: identifying how the last years’ events will permanently shift the way the business world operates. Some of the topics the conference will deal with are: Do the aftershocks of last recession merit a new strategic direction, or were they just a speed bump? In the wake of the recession, how are businesses picking up the pieces and finding their fit?

Who are the major actors that influence corporate decision making in 2011 and beyond? What trends do America’s business leaders feel will influence their companies in the next decade? How do corporations anticipate market fluctuations and use these predictions to identify an opportunity? How will changes in world’s natural resources affect businesses moving forward?

Conference Director Andrea Wolberg asked us to re-transmit this message, shared with you below.


I’m the Director of Business Today’s 2011 International Conference, and applications are live and due on July 24th!

Business Today is an organization I’m involved with at Princeton, founded by Steve Forbes when he was an undergrad. The International Conference will be held Nov 20-22 and is an all-expenses paid (airfare/hotel/meals), 3-day event held at the Grand Hyatt in NYC. It’s is the perfect opportunity to wine and dine with Fortune 500 CEOs: Past executive speakers have included Steve Forbes, Bill Ford, Alan Blinder, and the leaders of Avon Cosmetics, Godiva, Southwest Airlines and many more companies. We just confirmed Wendy Kopp (the Founder of Teach for America) and Ron Meyer (President & COO of Universal Studios) as two of the keynote addresses for this year’s conference.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at awolberg@princeton.edu

The only candidate requirement is to be an undergraduate student at university. Don’t miss out on this great opportunity!

Professional Internships Abroad: the AIESEC proposal that will rock your foundations

Last year, Natalia Kuyumllian, a 20 year old Commercialization student, went on a professional exchange to Brazil through the NGO AIESEC Bs As, organization in which she currently takes part as a volunteer. Today she tells us about her experience.

AIESEC is the international platform for university students and recent graduates who look to become agents of change and generate a positive impact on society. Based on the concept of global learning and seeking personal as well as professional development, the NGO gives 10000 members each year the challenging opportunity of living and working in another country. Natalia found AIESEC almost by mistake, looking for a job on an employment website. However, she decided to apply, got in and shortly after was granted her desired internship at a non-profit organization in Brazil: ACAO MORADIA.

Why did you decide to go on an exchange? What motivated you?

I have wanted to go on an exchange ever since high school. I liked the idea of finding myself alone in a different country, getting to know other cultures, speaking another language and find out about other lifestyles.

What type of job and tasks did you do?

I worked in marketing consulting. The ONG of which I was part was dedicated to teaching a trade to low-income people and helping them create their own micro-enterprises and we did the consulting for the latter. I worked with a Colombian girl with whom I also lived and together we developed an improvement project on both production and promotion for these micro-enterprises.

What was the biggest cultural shock?

I don’t know if I had such a big cultural shock; we have a lot in common with Brazil. The fact that the family with whom I was staying was Buddhist was something I learnt a lot from. I spent Christmas with them and it was definitely strange, but yet amazing. I think spending the holidays there was the most “shocking” thing.

What insight did this trip leave you?

A lot! I had the good fortune of not only getting to know Brazilians, but people from all over Latin-America. I learnt that it doesn’t matter if we live thousands of miles away, have different ways and celebrate in a different matter. There is a common pattern, and that is that we are all human. We feel, we are passionate and surprised about the same things. We may all express it in a different way, but there was no way you could not feel identified with any of the people you met and you could always learn something from one another. I finished my trip feeling Brazilian, but also feeling a lot of respect and admiration for countries like Colombia, Costa Rica and Venezuela because I learnt a lot from them and now have great affection for their Ambassadors (my friends over there).

What would you recommend youths who are about to start their internship?

If you already know what country you are going to, start researching things about it, make contact with the committee that is going to receive you there and start getting to know them. Plan your trip with extra days so that you can travel and get to know other regions, not just the one you are going to be living in. And to those who still don’t know where they’re going, research the countries that are available to you, think of what each one can give you and which attract you the most. Make contact with other youths who are currently away or who have already returned so that they can give you some useful tips. They are people who have already been through this and are full of recommendation that can come in handy.

What would you tell youths to convince them to dare to leave and live a great experience?

I’d tell them what I always say in the informative talks: it is the best way to change your lives, to grow as people and professionals. Your vision becomes a lot more global and you contribute to make others’ the same too. It is an experience that rocks your very foundations and changes your life forever, with new friends, new families and new homes.

This was Natalia’s experience. If you want to challenge yourself, get to know other cultures, put the knowledge you learnt at school into practice and overcome your limits, do not hesitate to contact AIESEC. A unique experience awaits you.

Por more information, visit their website or get in touch through email.

We debated and learned together with Mariano Sigman

Some days ago, we had the chance to listen and interact with Mariano Sigman about neuroscience, cognitive science and technological developments.

The talk was started with one of the frontiers that science broke. According to Sigman, our thoughts are our private territory since no one can know what we are thinking. However, this principle is about to change.

He gave us examples with optical illusions, where what we saw was not really being projected on the screen and even changed forms. This is because our sensory system transmits to our brain how it changes reality, but not reality in itself. Although the external world does not change, the subjective thinking of each of us does. Also, only a small part of what we see of the world goes into the conscience and if a slight modification is made, we would hardly notice it. The stimulus that enters to our brain leaves unconsciously in our mind signs that can be seen in brain experiments.

If a person is shown a stimulus, we cannot know whether he saw it or not, because of what was mentioned before that the brain is our private world. Nevertheless, today’s technological advances related to neuroscience, are allowing us to analyze the brain and know if the stimulus reaches it in a conscious or unconscious way. Mariano informed that the challenge is knowing whether we could ever decode a person’s thinking, deducing what he thinks from how his brain reacts. The possible development of a code to separate dozens of thousands of mental states, know what verbs or nouns are crossing the human mind in a certain moment, is being considered.

We continued the talk surprising us with “revolutions” that the technological and scientific advances he exposed. As an example: communicating with people who don’t do so since they can’t activate their muscles, know what a person dreams about and if anaesthesia is working correctly in operations.

He also introduced the concept of hypnosis: an altered state of consciousness that is used in many experiments to know how the mind works and if there exists some way to manipulate it. We learned about the human computation: we are inferential beings, that is to say that with only seeing something for a few seconds, we already have an almost complete formed idea of the object. We wonder: how could we programme a machine to do that? The amazement of our thoughts is that we can do a lot of things without even knowing how to do them.

We are grateful for both the visit of Mariano Sigman and all the attendees and we really hope you all enjoyed the conference as much as we did.

Opinion article: The response of the developing world

Global poverty and environmental degradation is what will stand between our success and failures in the world. According to Anup Shah, 80% of humanity lives on less than $10 a day, and sub-Saharan Africa takes the fair share of this poverty and underdevelopment. Second in the race, is South East Asia accounting for high infant mortality rates and 22 000 children that die of poverty every day. 72 million children, who should be in primary school in the developing world, are not in primary school.

This data speaks an unfortunate message. The message that, even as the world enters times and moments of incredible economic growth, the developing world continues to lag behind, and so a significant part of what we ought to do to cope with exponential growth, is to challenge the realities of illiteracy, poverty, health and disease in the developing world, better to increase participation in the development of the world and of humanity.

As humans we are bound by the values of Ubuntu (African Philosophy). These are values of empathy, kindness, collectiveness, and love of humanity will and must play an integral role in coping with the exponential times in development. Because of development, the process of globalisation will dominate. These processes of globalisation, more often than not, contribute to the brain drain of developing countries and the removal of skilled labour from developing their respective communities and countries of origin. These become a pool of intellect for European and developed countries, and leave African, South Asian and Latin American countries barren of the intellectual capacity that will be necessary to successfully manage the resources (health, farming, mines, land) to improve the lives of the citizens and of humanity.

And so, a part of what must be done to cope with development, is to successfully ensure that the fruits of development and change are evenly distributed among the people of the world, and that whatever we do contributes to making the world a better place for everyone. Part of what must be done is to emphasise that the 20 000 African graduates that leave Africa every year due to soft power persuasion, globalisation and the search for a ‘better’ life must be encouraged to stay at home and use their skills to build a better society, and so the challenge is how do we encourage skilled labour to use their new found knowledge to improve humanity rather than search for individualistic interests which is the natural response?

Wandile Mamba

José Luis Cordeiro debated with us

Today we would like to share with you some of the most relevant aspects of the conference that José Luis Cordeiro gave during his visit to ITBA. There, he offered his view on the future role of technology and its impact over human beings’ physical, intellectual and psychological capacities, in correspondence with the SABF 2011 topics.

To begin with, he introduced to us the Latinamerican challenge: see towards the world and towards the future since everything is accelerating. He exemplified this idea with the case of China, a country with record growth, and stated that Asian countires are the ones exhibiting the highest growth rates. The latter invites us to see the world with a new face: the economic activity and its pillar countries are not what they used to be.

According to the Singularity University, of which he is a professor, nowhere in the world are people prepared to face the changes that are coming at a human level. He also defined technological singularity as the moment in which artificial intelligence reaches the level of human intelligence.

As concrete proof of change ocurring faster and faster, he commented on the evolution of perforated cards into pendrives, genome decodification, the finding of ancesters dating from over 5000 years back and the discovery of over 500 planets since 1995. However, we must not only look into the past but also into the future; for example, calculating the hypothetical descendents of two people.

Moreover, he presented Japan as a paradigmatic example: 130 million inhabitants in a region barely the size of Uruguay. “It is a poor country with rich people that has focused on education and technology”.

Regarding the future, Cordeiro said that the basic technologies would be four: nanotechnology, biotechnology, cognotechnology and infotechnology. As the homo sapiens sapiens concept indicates, we are the first species who knows they know. Sr. Cordeiro suggests we see the good side in bad things, like for example, the chinese character for crisis contains both danger and opportunity but we have to work in this last one and, instead of cursing the darkness, enlighten our future taking a proactive attitude.

Finally, he presented Sir Arthur Clarke’s rules of the future. 1) When a scientist says that something is possible, he is right, but when he says it’s impossible, he is wrong. 2) The only way to reach the limits of what’s possible is to venture into the limits of the impossible. 3) Any advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. He concluded his talk inviting us to reflect on the following: “Fascinating times are coming, and I don’t know what is going to happen”

We thank Dr. Cordeiro for his visit as well as those who were present. Our next conference will take place on Monday May 23rd at 18.30 hs featuring Mariano Sigman. We invite you to keep reading our blog since we will be publishing more details on the event shortly.

SABF 2011: Main Topic

The seventh edition of South American Business Forum opened its application period on February 1st. One of the main requirements to be part of this unique experience is the power of the ideas each of the applicants will present. How can you do it? Through your essay.

In this opportunity, we will tell you more about the main topics of SABF 2011, and those which will be discussed directly, or indirectly, with the essays that each one of you will present in order to be selected.

SABF 2011 is based on the topic “Facing exponential times”. In the last decades, we have witnessed enormous changes. However, their speed has been increasing. This implies that the processes and dynamics involved in our daily life seem affected in different ways, forcing us to adapt ourselves to the scenario.

Nowadays, we must stop observing and start acting about it. How can we do it? This is our question. To answer it, we will discuss about three topics: “Technology and Information: foundations of a 2.0 society”, “Economic development in a dynamic world” and “Building Tomorrow’s education, transforming the educational model”.

In the next articles, we will present more information about each of the three topics of SABF 2011, to start a debate that will take place, more deeply and diverse, in the next edition on 5th, 6th and 7th August in Buenos Aires. Apply on apply.sabf.org.ar. You have time until 6th May to be part of this amazing opportunity.

New Year Message.

In this last day of 2010, we want to thank South American Business Forum’s community for being part of this amazing year. Thanks to the support and hard work of everyone involved, we have make SABF’s sixth edition possible with great success. For the first time, participants from all five continents have lived during three days the sabf experience. Moreover, we thank and encourage all those students who applied to SABF, from 105 different countries. More than 2500 registered confirm us that SABF keeps growing thanks to you.

On the other hand, we want to thank also to all the speakers and juries that have helped us to carry out 2010 edition. We underline their generosity and their contribution from all of their countries. We thank them all their participation, and their predisposition to help us overcome all the challenges we proposed this year, such as the round tables and student workshops. These changes in the forum’s dynamic has allowed SABF growing and improving the quality of our debates.

Once again, to all of those who worked and keep working anually for SABF, we thank your effort and support, and we invite you to keep in touch with SABF, and to participate of SABF seventh edition. During 2011, we will be working from this blog and all the different social networks to keep you informed about the work in progress and SABF 2011 topics. We remind you that the application period will start on February 1st. We are looking forward your applications to share, one more year, the South American Business Forum experience.

Post SABF experience, told first hand.

A year ago, I was in Buenos Aires, willing to live South American Business Forum 2009. I had been selected as one of its 100 participants. That was how, without really knowing what I would find though I had exchanged several emails with other students, I was anxiously waiting for the forum to begin.

Today, a year after, I still have spare words (and have no doubts I will keep on having them)  to express and define those three days in Buenos Aires and what has been happening after that. I have no doubts and can firmly affirm: SABF was, is and will always be an amazing life experience.

Since that experience, I have been in contact with many people from different parts of the world. As time goes by, I’ve been able to talk to other SABF editions participants, delegates and members of different SABF organizing team aside from the year 2009. One of the many things SABF tought me was to share knowledge, ideas and achievements. Those of us who have been part of SABF know what I’m speaking about. Suddenly, we have a new group of friends with whom we debate, speak, share moments, ideas, university summaries, pictures, trips, and so on.

During those three days of October, I got to know María Lasa, a young student from Córdoba, Argentina. A few months later, María invited me to be part of one of her projects, TodoJóvenes. I accepted and I became part of the team, together with some other SABF 2009 participants. This has been one of the challenges from which I’ve learnt the most.

My work in TodoJovenes made me more inquisitive and let me search for academic opportunities on daily basis. Aside from posting news on our website, I send emails to SABF community with academic opportunities, such as scholarships, congresses, conferences. With this vast flow of emails, I’m happy to recognize I’ve helped some sabfers to get to live wonderful experiences. It’s been less than a week since two sabfers were selected for two international events.

María Lasa (sabfer 2009) will be representing Argentina in Brussels, Belgium. She was rewarded with the first international place thanks to her essay and she will attend two international conferences: Strengthening Responsible Business and Governance in Africa and Ethics in Business – CCS World Youth Forum at the European Parliament in Brussels.

Gonzalo Huertas (sabfer 2009 & 2010) will represent us in Austria, Vienna when he travels, in november, to the Peter Drucker Academy since he’s achieved the 6th place in the Peter Drucker Challenge.

To both of them, our most sincere congratulations.

SABF, thanks for all these days in which we were able to meet each other. Thanks for all the projects sabfers have begun. Thanks to all of you for your immeasurable effort, willingness and happiness. We believe this is what SABF is about: creating bonds, sharing ideas and building the work that will help us improve, little by little, the world we are.We will be always grateful.

We kindly invite all of those who are interested to join this incredible experience. Soon, there will be more information available about SABF 2011. And those that have had the amazing opportunity of living SABF, I invite you to keep on connecting among ourselves, sharing information, enjoying and growing.

Patricia Soledad Fernández Bugna, in collaboration with Juan Ignacio Catalano (SABF 2007 & 2010), Gustavo Pedrazzoli (SABF 2009), Nicolás Rojas (SABF 2009), Luca Cafici (SABF 2009), Evelin Monti (SABF 2009 & 2010) and Gonzalo Huertas (SABF 2009 & 2010).