OBIC Conference 2021

"Megatrends in Asia": Digitalization 
Security and Foreign Policy Implications

The OBIC Conference 2020, which had been postponed, was held online on the 6-7th of May 2021.

After having to postpone the OBIC Conference 2020, the OBIC organizes its annual international conference in 2021 online, through live-stream with real-time presence. For the virtual event, presentations shall be recorded in advance, meanwhile panel discussions will require real-time participation in order to facilitate scholarly discussion and debate.

As promised, the papers that were approved in 2020 would be accepted for this year's conference too, however, there is the possibility to update your abstracts and full papers if needed.

Topic of the Conference

The term megatrend was coined by John Naisbitt in 1982. Back then he defined ten global megatrends that he viewed as important, seemingly unstoppable long-term shifts in the progress of societies. The goal of the OBIC conference is to discuss key, long-term challenges-megatrends-of the Asian region, with a special focus on digitalization in countries' security and foreign policies.

In recent years, Asian societies have been confronted by the rise of China transforming the Asia-Pacific region, particularly in economy- and security-related areas. At the same time, India and Indonesia are also rising economic powers that are substantially changing the shape of Asian economic power relations. The rapid growth of markets in the region has become more and more important as an element of global growth, however, challenges such as migration, urbanization, severe environmental problems (the climate challenge, air pollution, etc.) must be dealt with too. Over the course of the last decade, these tensions have often turned into local political disputes (i.e. in the South China Sea) and new initiatives (such as the Belt and Road Initiative) have come under fire and have also been fiercely debated in some countries too.

One of the megatrends, to which special attention ought to be paid at the conference, is digitalization and its significance in countries' security and foreign policies. Recent technological developments have allowed observers to realize that a new wave of the technology revolution is about to transform the global economy and politics as well. Digitalization, 5G networks, the Internet of things, artificial intelligence, and their profound impact are already here, however the way we are doing business, implementing our economic policies, and pursuing foreign policies is about to change more significantly than we could ever have imagined.

Topics and panel themes:

  • Digitalization
  • Demographics
  • Economic interconnectedness
  • Economic power shift
  • Climate change
  • Urbanization
  • Migration


Alexei D. Voskressenski 

Professor Dr.Pol.Sc., Ph.D. (Victoria University of Manchester), PhD (Institute of Far Eastern Studies, Moscow), directs a Center of Comprehensive Chinese Studies and Regional Projects (MGIMO University). He joined MGIMO in 1999 as head of the Department of Asian and African Studies (1999-2007) after many years of work for the Russian Academy of Sciences, was Dean, College of Political Affairs and World Politics and School of Political Science (2008-2017), and is professor of Asian Studies, IR and Comparative Politics at the School of International Relations (MGIMO) from 1999. He is founding editor-in-chiefof the internationally indexed peer-reviewed journal "Comparative Politics Russia" (www.comparative, member of the Civic Council, Ministry for the Development of Far East, and vice-chairman of the Steering Committee, Russian Association of Chinese Studies. Professor Voskressenski is an author, co-author, joint-author and editor of 50+ books (the most recent are The Regional World Order, Non-Western International Relation Theories, and Is Non-Western Democracy Possible?) published in Russia, the USA, GB, EU, Singapore, China and around 450+ book chapters, academic articles, essays, reviews and other professional writings of various kind published in many countries. He regularly appears on TV commenting on international politics.

Marcell Horváth

Marcell Horváth serves as Executive Director for International Relations in the central bank of Hungary (Magyar Nemzeti Bank, MNB). He joined the MNB in 2013 as Head of the Governor's Office, then became the head of the International Relations Directorate in 2016. Before joining the MNB he worked in the Ministry for National Economy in various positions including Secretary for Foreign Affairs to the Minister, Secretary to Government Commissioner for Hungarian Chinese Bilateral Relations, expert of the Investment Strategy Department. He graduated from the Faculty of Law and Political Science of Pázmány Péter Catholic University in 2009 and has a BA in European Business Law of University of Abertay Dundee. He is the author of a book on the Panama-canal treaties (Panama-canal treaties or a small nation's struggle for independence) published in Hungary and several articles related to Eurasian issues.

Yoo-Taek Lee

Professor Yoo-Taek Lee has many years of experience in teaching, scholarly research, and global consulting. Recently, he was appointed by Woosong University as the Dean of Endicott College and the Inaugural Dean of JWKIM College of Future Studies. Prior to joining Woosong University, he taught at Babson College as an Assistant Professor, Emmanuel College as an Associate Professor, and Boston University as a Master Lecturer in USA. Professor Lee has served International Network of Korean Entrepreneurs Boston branch office as a Chair by supporting SMEs for their global expansion strategy and Advisory Board Member of Korea Management Association Consultants (KMAC).
He taught various courses for executive, graduate and undergraduate programs. His innovative courses include Entrepreneurship for Execution and Asia Field Seminar, as well as he teaches Lean Six Sigma, Project Management, Global Supply Chain, and Operations Management courses.
Professor Lee's research interests include corporate entrepreneurship, global supply chain management, corporate social responsibility, capability upgrading, and smart factory in the era of digital transformation. His recent research project includes the relationship between corporate entrepreneurship and innovation, development strategies of small and medium-sized suppliers in a global supply chain, and the capability upgrading at the firm level that focuses on how SMEs sustain their competitiveness in global supply chains. His research has been published in such scholarly journals as Journal of Supply Chain Management, the International Journal of Information System and Supply Chain Management, and the International Journal of Data Analysis and Information System. Professor Lee published his second book, Platform of the New Growth: Corporate Social Responsibility written in Korean (May 2012).

Zhidas Daskalovski 

Zhidas Daskalovski holds a PhD from the Political Science Department, Central European University. He has published numerous scholarly articles on politics in the Southeast European region, and Macedonia country reports for Freedom House/Nations in Transit, Open Budget Index, Global Integrity Report, Bertelsmann Transformation Index, UNDP People Centered Analysis, UN Human Development Report, Berghof Foundation. A professor at the Faculty of Security-Skopje, University of "St. Kliment Ohridski" he is also Director of the Council of Europe supported School of Public Policy "Mother Teresa". He held the Lord Dahrendorf Fellowship at St. Antony's College, Oxford University, the UCL/School of Slavonic and East European Studies Macedonian Studies Fellowship, and the Social Science Research Council/ Ethnobarometer Fellowship at the University of North Caroline. Since 2015 he is the Macedonian Public advocate of REKOM for the establishment of an official Regional Commission tasked with establishing the facts about the war crimes and other serious human rights violations committed on the territory of the former Yugoslavia in the period from 1 January 1991 through to 31 December 2001.