By: Jihan Anwar
TEDxSanaa announced the deadline for applying to the 2012 conference to be Thursday, November 15th, 2012. TEDxSanaa is the very first TEDx event in Yemen and will take place on December 31st of the current year. To understand what is it is, we need to mention what TED is all about.
TED(Technology Entertainment Design) is a nonprofit organization devoted to ‘Ideas Worth Spreading’. For over 20 years, the TED Conference has been held every spring in Long Beach, California. TED has established an annual TED Prize, where exceptional individuals that strive to change the world are given the opportunity to put their wishes into action.
TEDx, where “x” connotes an independently organized event, offers individuals or groups a way to host local, self-organized events around the world bringing people together to share a TED-like experience.
At the core of a TEDx event are talks a maximum of 18 minutes long and the strength of the ideas they carry. Speakers are selected based solely on the power of their ideas independently from their socio-political background, age or point of views. The only taboo topics at a TED or TEDx event is religion and politics; other than that, groundbreaking ideas and speeches on a multitude of topics are welcomed.
Every TED and TEDx talk is uploaded and made available free of charge on the internet at ted.com.
TEDxSanaa has organized small events with the aim of introducing the TEDx concept to the Yemeni public at several locations such as the Lebanese International University, YALI and Exceed. The first of this series of TEDx introductions was held at the Coffee Corner and was attended, among others, by Capital Secretary Abduladir Helal, Undersecretary of the Ministry of Tourism Mutahar Taqi and Human Rights Minister Houria Mashour. The next event in which the format and outline of TEDxSanaa will be explained is expected to take place at Fee Coffee in the upcoming week.
Salwa Al-Sharjabi, a member of the organizing team, mentioned that the whole purpose of TEDxSanaa was to give new hope to anyone in Yemen who had been negatively affected by the recent crises and challenges in the country.
TEDxSanaa curator Mazen Al-Hebshi also observed the tremendous opportunities and exposure at the international level speakers will receive thanks to their attendance to the conference. This is also true for sponsor as TED is an internationally recognized non-profit event.