Photo: L-R Tahirah Banks, Jose Vanterpool and Ralph Birkoff
By The Anguillan
The “Loft” at Davida’s Restaurant was the scene of a special forum on Wednesday night, August 12th. Proprietor of “Thoughtful”, Ms. Tahirah Banks, and her partner, Gino Webster, were hosts of the event simply called “Sustainable Anguilla”, with emphasis on technological advancements of Anguilla and the region for future socio-economic development and sustainability.
The forum was in collaboration with the OECS under the theme “Small Islands Building Tech Industries for Sustainable Development”. Ms. Banks made a statement regarding the forum and her aspirations for Anguilla to wholeheartedly embrace the advancement of technology in a 21st century world: “We developed the “Sustainable Anguilla” campaign as a part of my ambassadorship with the OECS,” she stated. I felt it was important to develop a platform that would allow us to pursue an ongoing thrust in technological development in just about every area of Anguilla life.”
She continued by referring to the SDM 2020, which is the SIAM International Conference on Data Mining. SIAM stands for Service Integration and Management. She said: “In September there will be the SDM 2020 Conference that was initially scheduled to take place in St. Lucia, but plans had to be changed due to COVID-19. Hence the conference will take the form of a virtual meeting online.
“The SDM 2020 is a conference that allows some of the brightest minds from around the world to come together and discuss the advancements in technology, and how these technologies can benefit our development as a Caribbean people. This forum is the starting point of executing locally and regionally on our vision for transforming Anguilla into the digital capital of the Caribbean.”
Speakers at Wednesday night’s forum included experts in the realm of technology on various aspects of life. The following panelists spoke via video feed: Dr Didacus Jules, of St. Lucia, on the youth of the regions involvement in technological advances in agriculture and education; Mr. Hugh Riley of Barbados on technological trends in tourism; Ms. Kate Brown, from New Zealand, on technological innovations that can bring the island together and Gordon Taylor spoke from the United States on the subject of public and private partnerships in the technological development of communities.
Panelists who were physically present included: Mr. Ralph Birkoff who spoke on the technologies of food production; and the Hon. Jose Vanterpool who addressed the subject of E-residency and a digital society.
Many persons in attendance found interest in the various topics of the forum, and the audience’s participation was quite favourable. The forum was sponsored by the Anguilla Social Security Board and Digicel.