As it is known world-wide, Argentina is going through a sanitary crisis due to the Influenza H1N1 that is seriously affecting the population. Unfortunately, and in a very sudden way, the situation became definitely worse during the last week.
We have been in contact with specialists in infectology and epidemiology that have assessed us in this matter and their recommendation was unanimous: not to go ahead with the event in the fixed date. Moreover, during the very last days, the sanitary alert was declared in the Argentinean Republic. Besides, our university, Instituto Tecnológico de Buenos Aires, is not able to ensure that its doors will be open during the first days of August (during the days of the forum). It is really hard to organize a Forum without the certainty that the location where it will take place will be open. It is important to remark that at SABF we respect and support the decisions taken by our university.
For these reasons, the organising team of the South American Business Forum would like to inform, much to its regret, that in the context of the worldwide pandemic of Influenza H1N1, we find ourselves incapable of going through the realization of the fifth edition of the SABF, expected for August, 7th, 8th, and 9th, 2009.
At SABF, we constantly promote the values, ethic and responsibility. Therefore, due to the international reach of the conference and the given infection risk, we consider necessary the postponement of the event. This is to avoid both the potential propagation of the virus to other parts of the world and the infection of any of the participants involved. SABF is an event that gathers 100 university students between 18 and 30 years of age, and this is one of the age-groups at most risk. Moreover, it would not be responsible to ignore the comments of university authorities and experts.
Even though there are other public spaces open, we feel a responsibility towards each of the SABF participants. We do not want any of the participants feel disadvantaged.
It is very difficult to explain in words the anguish we feel by communicating this decision. The organising team has been working for a year in order to present a forum of excellence, and we finally know that it will not be possible for us to do so under our original plans. We hope that you can understand this decision and how much we would have liked not to be forced to undertake it.
We find ourselves analysing the possibility of carrying out the SABF in the month of October, with an alternative program. We are working very hard to confirm this opportunity as soon as possible, and we will be letting you know the news during the next days.
We want to thank profoundly to students, jury, delegates, speakers, sponsors and all those who supported and trusted the 2009 SABF. Having taken the decision of not going through with the SABF is, probably, the most serious challenge that this team has ever faced and we would love you to be part of this new proposal that we will be developing. The mission of SABF, which joined us in the first place, is still standing and we hope to count with your participation in this new path.
Regards and thank you very much for your comprehension,
The 2009 SABF Team.
Update: SABF has been postponed and will take place during October 23rd, 24th and 25th, 2009.