The biography and position statement of the 2016 IEEE Vice President, Member and Geographic Activities is below.
Wai-Choong (Lawrence) Wong is Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, National University of Singapore (NUS). He is currently Deputy Director of the Interactive and Digital Media Institute at NUS. He has held various management positions in NUS, including Head-Department of Electrical Engineering (2008-2009), Director–Computer Centre (2000-2002), Director–Centre for Instructional Technology (1998-2000). He was Executive Director of the Institute for Infocomm Research (I2R) from November 2002 – November 2006. Prior to joining NUS in 1983, he was a Member of Technical Staff at AT&T Bell Laboratories, Crawford Hill Lab, NJ, USA (1980-1983).
He received the B.Sc. (1st class Honors) and Ph.D. degrees in Electronic and Electrical Engineering from Loughborough University, UK, in 1976 and 1980, respectively. His research interests include wireless and sensor networks, ambient intelligent platforms and source matched transmission techniques with over 270 publications and 5 patents in these areas.
- IEEE Vice President, MGA
- IEEE MGA, Vice Chair Strategic Management & Analysis, 2013-2014
- IEEE Service Awards Committee, 2013-2014
- IEEE Board, 2011-12
- IEEE Technical Program Integrity Committee, 2011-2014
- IEEE MGA Awards and Recognition Committee, 2010
- IEEE Conference Committee, 2009
- IEEE Member Conduct Committee Hearing Panel, 2000-02
- IEEE Individual Benefits and Services Committee, Member, 1997-2001
- IEEE Admission and Advancement Committee, Member, 1994-95
- IEEE Region 10 Director 2011-12
- IEEE Region 10 Director-Elect 2009-10
- IEEE Region 10, Conference Coordinator, 2007-08
- IEEE Region 10 Strategic Planning Coordinator, 2003-06
- IEEE Region 10 Section/Chapter Support Coordinator, 2002-03
- IEEE Region 10 Electronic Communications Coordinator, 1997-2001
- IEEE Region 10 Awards & Recognition Committee, Chair, 1995-96
- IEEE Singapore Section, Chair, 1993-96
- IEEE Singapore Section Vice Chair, 1989-90
- IEEE Singapore Section Deputy Chair, 1988-91
- IEEE Singapore Section Advisory Panel, Chair, 1997-98
- IEEE Singapore Section Educational Activities, Chair, 1990
- IEEE Singapore Section Membership Development Chair, 1984-85
- IEEE Computer Society Singapore Chapter, Chair, 1987-89
- IEEE Computer Society Singapore Chapter Vice Chair, 1990-91
- IEEE Computer Society, Asian Activities Committee, Member, 1990-93
- IEEE International Conference on Communication Systems (ICCS), General Chair/Co-Chair, 2014, 2012, 2010, 2008, 2006, 2004, 2002
- IEEE International Conference on Networks (ICON), General Chair/Co-Chair, 2008, 2006, 2004, 2002, 2000
- Workshop on Mobile, Wireless and Sensor Networks: Technology and Future Directions (MOBWISER), General Chair, 2004
- IEEE Region 10 Conference (TENCON), General Chair/Co-Chair, 1994, 2001
- IEEE Singapore International Conference on Networks (SICON), General Chair, 1991 & 1989
- IEEE Singapore Megacon 1995 Steering Committee, General Chair, 1995
- IEEE Singapore International Conference on Networks/International Conference on Info Engineering (ICON/ICIE ), General Co-Chair, 1995 and 1993
- IEEE Global Telecommunications Conference (GLOBECOM ’95), Local Arrangements Chair, 1995
AD HOC COMMITTEES/OTHERS:
- Globalization Ad Hoc Committee, Member, 2014
- IEEE Volunteer Onboarding Leadership Training (VOLT), Mentor, 2013
- IEEE Public Visibility Ad Hoc Committee, Member, 2012
I have been a volunteer and volunteer leader in several positions at the chapter, section, region, MGA and Board levels since 1984. These include being elected as chapter chair, section chair and region director, appointed as MGA vice chair, and elected as vice president - MGA. As a result of my involvement and contributions in these various roles as well as other volunteer portfolios, I have the opportunity to learn and appreciate the diversity and complexity of issues relevant to the position for which I’m now nominated. Having the benefit to be exposed to different levels of geo-unit operations and activities, and the diversity of how such organizational units (OUs) are structured and the landscapes within which they operate, I believe I can bring greater value to enhancing geo-unit capacity and capabilities that will ultimately result in increased member value at the local level.
At my day job, I have taken on a number of management roles, including Executive Director of the Institute for Infocomm Research, a research organization with about 500 research and administrative staff, Head of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at the National University of Singapore (NUS) (which is one of the largest departments in the university with a faculty strength of about 100), Director of the Computer Centre at NUS and Director of the Centre for Instructional Technology at NUS. These roles enabled me to contribute both in terms of managing daily operational routines as well as charting strategic and long-term directions.
Among the major accomplishments that I have brought to IEEE include:
- Initiated priority focus on Young Professionals and Practitioners in the 2015 MGA workplan and to address this jointly with other OUs, such as Technical Activities and Educational Activities.
- Developing an MGA strategic plan for Japan and India and to follow through with the complexities of their implementation taking into account different landscapes, cultures, and expectations in 2013-2014.
- As Region 10 Director in 2011-2012, various new initiatives and programs were started, including the launch of the 2nd Region 10 Conference series, establishing a rigorous process of OU petition verification, streamlining the Region 10 awards program, and fostering a vibrant affinity group program, in particular WIE and GOLD.
- Started the conference series, Singapore International Conference on Networks (SICON) in 1989, which subsequently became the International Conference on Networks (ICON) in 2000. This conference series has successfully facilitated collaborations between IEEE Singapore Computer Chapter and regional IEEE OUs with its hosting across the region.
- Built a robust, sustainable and empowered IEEE Singapore Section as Section Chair in 1993-1996 that led to significant growth in activities and membership in Singapore. Chapters grew in strength with enterprising projects. Universities benefited from these with several sponsored and endowed student awards.
- As IEEE Region 10 Awards Committee Chair in 1995, I started the IEEE Region 10 Outstanding Volunteer Awards.
- As IEEE Region 10 Electronic Communications Coordinator in 1997, I launched the IEEE Region 10 website, and rallied the support of Councils/Sections/Chapters across Region 10 to leverage on the newly available EWH server to host their respective websites.
I believe the need to enhance value to members is of paramount importance to enable IEEE to grow. Member benefits and professional content and engagement are key. In terms of member benefits, IEEE needs to be responsive to the livelihood issues of members, while on technical and professional aspirations, IEEE's quality content is a major draw. At the local level, it is the local IEEE Sections and Chapters where there are greatest opportunities to reach out to members and to provide them with tangible value and benefits. However, this is a key challenge facing IEEE volunteers. As 2015 VP-MGA, I started and supported priority focus at the MGAB on:
- Exceptional member experience
- Modernizing and improving volunteer experience
- Improving Inter-OU Cooperation
- Cohesive and coordinated global strategy
As MGA moves from the planning phase to the implementation phase, and if I am re-elected as 2016 VP-MGA, I can follow through with the programs and activities started in 2015 to ensure successful implementations in 2016. The priority focus topics aim to address the challenges and in so doing create meaningful and sustainable benefits to members and volunteers.
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