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UCSF to Host 2014 TEDMED

Campus Selected as First of Seven Global Venues for Popular Speaker Series

By Kristen Bole

UCSF Chancellor Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, delivered a TEDMED talk last year in Washington, D.C. The speaker series is expanding this year to a second location and has chosen UCSF to host. Photo courtesy of TEDMED

In a nod to UC San Francisco’s role as a health sciences innovator, TEDMED has chosen UCSF as its “natural” first global partner, with plans for an initial event to take place simultaneously in San Francisco and Washington, D.C., on Sept. 10-12.

This will be the first step in an international roll-out of the annual gathering, with the goal of holding simultaneous events across seven locations in the future, including China, Japan, the Middle East and Western Europe. Each of those permanent sites, which TEDMED will begin announcing next year, will be hosted by a city and leading medical research institution, and will be digitally linked to the other sites.

“There has never been a greater need for an inclusive worldwide gathering that showcases, supports and sparks innovative thinking and imaginative new approaches to health and medicine,” TEDMED curator Jay Walker said in announcing the expansion and UCSF’s role as a permanent institutional partner for the event. “Soon the whole world will come together for one week every year at TEDMED, where all will be invited to experience and share the best of what humankind can achieve in service of health and medicine.”

The partnership, in which Chancellor Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, played a key role, will bring to San Francisco a world-renowned event that convenes 1,500 leaders and innovators each year from all sectors of society to explore the promise of technology and innovation in health and medicine.

“We at UCSF are excited to partner with TEDMED in its launch of a worldwide initiative that will inspire new thinking and collaborations to impact health and medicine worldwide,” said Desmond-Hellmann, whose stewardship of the OME Precision Medicine Summit in May 2013 helped cement UCSF’s role as a convener of the most innovative thought leaders in modern health and science.

As such, it was a natural conference for UCSF and fitting location for TEDMED. In the Jan. 15 announcement, TEDMED cited UCSF’s role as a premier research institution and academic medical center, as well as its location in San Francisco – a city known for innovation and as the gateway to Silicon Valley – as its reasons for selecting the campus to launch the global initiative.

TEDMED said the decision to produce a global annual gathering was driven by the accelerating pace of change in health and medicine, in which scientists worldwide are becoming more connected, patients are becoming more engaged, and fresh ideas and solutions are coming from bright minds around the world.

“We are seeing a revolution in health from the ground up, as technology pushes patient engagement and encourages a new culture of active wellness,” said Walker, from TEDMED.  “A growing wave of health information will transform health delivery at every level.” 

You can find TEDMED's press release about this announcement here.

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