Dr. Umar Saif works as the Chairman of the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB), heading all public-sector IT projects in Punjab. He is also the founding Vice Chancellor of ITU, a newly setup research university in Lahore. Dr. Saif is the founder of Pakistan's first and largest startup incubator Plan9, and is often cited as the main force behind Pakistan's startup ecosystem. Dr. Saif received his PhD in 2001 at University of Cambridge and worked at MIT for several years before returning to Pakistan. He was named as one of the top 35 young innovators by the MIT Technology Review (TR35) in 2011 and a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum in 2010. He has received a Google Faculty Research Award, MIT Technovator Award, Mark Weiser Award and IDG Technology Pioneer Award. Prof. Saif was awarded Sitara-i-Imtiaz, one of the highest civil awards by government of Pakistan. He was named among the 500 most influential Muslims in the world in 2015 and 2016.
Programming descriptions are generated by participants and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of SXSW.