TEDxDhaka 2017 Registration is now OPEN

TEDxDhaka 2017 Rendering Tomorrow open

The application for attending TEDxDhaka 2017 is now open!

APPLICATION FORM: http://bit.ly/TEDxDhakaApply
DEADLINE: As soon as the seats run out.
WHEN: Full day 09:00 – 19:00, November 18th, 2017, Saturday
THEME of the event:

As #Bangladesh goes through a period of rapid transition in economic growth, it is set to encounter the impact stemming from transitioning. We need to prepare to embrace the changes. We need to renew our actions, bring new ideas and take fresh initiatives to bring a humane and inclusive future.
This year’s TEDxDhaka will focus on various aspects of preparing and rendering a better tomorrow in the new economic era amid the fourth industrial revolution.
The discussion on this year’s theme turned to addressing challenges the country will be facing, which includes mentions of striving to improve infrastructure, addressing the fallout from climate change, the need to proactively engaging in improved health-care facilities, food-safety and human-rights, and several others.

We Are Setting Up the Team for TEDxDhaka 2017

Yes, we are gearing up again. And the first and foremost work is to gather the team around.
Many from the old team will join back of course, while we also want to see new faces in the allegedly the most kickass team in town 😎

Come join hands with us if you have some spare time to donate for the cause of ‘Ideas Worth Spreading’ in Dhaka! Apply to become a volunteer or a part of the Extended Core-Team Members of TEDxDhaka to organize the much anticipated TEDxDhaka 2017 event scheduled to take place sometimes in the November, 2017.

Here is the link to the application form: http://bit.ly/TEDxDhaka17VF

TEDxDhaka 2016 (December 10th) has been cancelled

Due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to cancel the standard annual TEDxDhaka altogether that was scheduled to take place on December 10th, 2016.

If you have already paid for the ticket, you will receive a refund. The refund will directly go to the account you paid it from online. If you have any question or confusion about the refunding process write to us at registration@tedxdhaka.com.bd.

We hope to get back again with a new theme, new event plans possibly in Fall 2017.

Until then, we hope you have a fantastic year ahead.

TEDxDhaka 2016 on December 10th


TEDxDhaka 2016: “Living Out Loud”

“We are each one of us a narrative, to be unlocked and amplified so that others can be moved, touched, inspired. Like that feeling when someone makes a spot-on analogy, and you realize that in all this diversity there is a common string of experience uniting all 7 billion of us. And our stories are marked by courage, nerve and a fair amount of recklessness. These stories unravel in the telling because we are not islands – we are reverberating, pounding, shouting, shining, beings – living out loud.”

This year’s TEDxDhaka will be taking place on Saturday, December 10, 2016.

Register here: bit.ly/TEDxDhakaLOL

Do you know someone who might be a great potential speaker for TEDxDhaka 2016? Nominate them, or even yourself, at http://tedxdhaka.com.bd/nominate.

If you have applied for Living Out Loud program before, you don’t have to apply again, you will be communicated.

TEDxDhaka: “Living Out Loud” Registration opens!

TEDxDhaka Living Out Loud

After a long pause since the last event in November 2014, we are back! And the upcoming event is taking place on July 30th, 2016 at the AISD. The registration to attend the event is now open!

You may apply through this link: Registration Form.

TEDxDhaka 2014 Session 4

Our fourth and final session of the day was more light-hearted than the former ones, yet full of life. We began with a dreamer and achiever in the field of robotics, followed by an amazing cartoonist duo, who captured the attention of the attendees with their magical animation. Last, but certainly not least was Yamin Khan, the popular Dhaka comedian.


The first speakers for our final session were Kushboo and Rakib.


Almost every 90’s kid is familiar with the popular science fictional character, Robocop. Khushboo was no different; she was fascinated by robots and all things science.

Kushboo’s journey began with her spouse who is also a tech lover, in their small home lab. Her first invention was a “vanilla ice cream box.” Kushboo quit her day job and the pair set off on a journey filled with robotic endeavors.

To this day, Khushboo and her husband Rakib, have had a few many breakthroughs. Their biggest achievements include participating in the NASA Lunabotic Competition, where they designed a robot that can collect soil samples on the moon. “We wish to make an advanced self-configured robot in the future,” she said.

“People often ask me, what’s my vision?” Khushboo reflected. “We don’t have any vision; we do what time requires of us.”


Our second pair of speakers in this section were cartoonists Manik and Ratan.


“We doodled everywhere,” they began. At a young age, they would draw in any blank space they could find.

Their cartoon journey began when they sent some of their regular artwork to Unmad, a cartoon magazine. Soon enough, they got a call from Ahsan Habib, a professional cartoonist.

However, the pair faced an obstacle: their parents wanted them to become computer engineers. In their final computer class presentation, their software project was a flop, but their animated cartoon work was a huge hit.

“We realized that we were not on the right track,” explained one of the twins. “We had to switch to something we were passionate about.”

Eventually they convinced their parents to let them switch to graphic design. Now, they are some of the top global digital artists. Their work has been featured in Forbes, the Huffington Post, and even the TED website.

“Everything was possible because of the courage we had to choose our own path and pursue our own dream,” they said.


Last but not least, comedian Yamin Khan took the stage to close out TEDxDhaka 2014.


“As far as I know, I am Yamin Khan,” he began. “Among all the speakers, I am the one with the least accomplishments.”

He revisited the previous speakers’ achievements, inviting a round of applause for all of them.

TEDxDhaka 2014 Session 3

Session 3 of TEDxDhaka featured talks about tackling child labor, physical abuse in the form of acid attacks, mental illness, child mortality and, a little off-topic, beatboxing. The talks from this session focused on the body and the mind.


Our first speaker during Session 3 was Nina Smith, Executive Director of GoodWeave International.


Smith narrated the story behind the intricately designed rug she was standing on, which was handmade in Kathmandu and was comprised of over 500,000 individual knots.

“I love hand made things; I always have,” said Smith.

Unfortunately, handmade goods can also have a dark side. Sanju, an 11-year-old from Nepal, was stolen from her home and taken to a weaving facility far away. She was forced to work day and night, in inhumane conditions. Deprived of her childhood, Sanju was trapped until GoodWeave, an organization working to eradicate child labor in the rug weaving industry, found her. Stories like these are widespread in South Asia and around the world.

“The only thing modern about modern slavery is that it is happening now,” Smith continued.

Smith invited everyone to look beyond these handmade goods to realize the struggles behind them. Initiatives like Goodweave give a market-based solution to a global problem.  GoodWeave works to raise awareness and promotes ethically made carpets that are not the product of child labor or slavery. A GoodWeave label indicates that the rug is made ethically. Check before you buy!

“What do we do? Wage a world war?” asked Smith. “No, not with the experience we have.”

By making the market-driven system more popular, Smith reiterated the possibility of eradicating child labor from the rug industry by 2020. Already, GoodWeave has reduced child labor in South Asia by 75%.

“May it be by our order that they gain freedom” Smith said.

The Talk Video



Our second speaker after lunch was Monira Rahman, the first executive director of the Acid Survivors Foundation.


According to Rahman, between 1999 and 2013, over 3000 people were attacked with acid in Bangladesh. A majority of these victims were women, but children, and to a small extent men, were also attacked. Acid attacks are mostly driven by money, property gain, or vengeance over failed love proposals.

Rahman started working as the first executive director of the Acid Survivors Foundation in 1999 to tackle this social problem. The organization provides education to acid attack victims about emergency treatment and implements programs to prevent acid attacks in future. The Acid Survivors Foundation involves communities, activists, victims, and doctors to help stop this violence.

During her talk, Rahman shared outstanding stories of courage and bravery. Nila, a 15-year-old girl was married off to a man working overseas. She was a skilled dancer and was very beautiful. However, her husband was jealous that she might look at other men and threw acid on her face to destroy her beauty.

“What if you looked in the mirror and did not recognize yourself?” Rahman asked.

Now, the Acid Control Act (2002) and Acid Crime Control Act (2002) exist to help convict perpetrators. Unfortunately, because the majority of attacks are carried out by people victims know or love, the conviction rate is extremely low. The Acid Survivors Foundation’s relentless efforts to prevent acid attacks have helped reduce the number of such attacks to less than 100 in 2013.

“We want to shut down the Acid Survivors Foundation because we do not want acid attacks to take place in Bangladesh,” Monira declared.


Well known beatboxer Shanto was next in our line up. “Life starts with a beat,” he began.


According to Shanto, beats are natural. Even a heart has a beat. People begin making sounds from a young age, when crashing toy cars and playing with dolls. Shanto encouraged everyone to ignore people who call others weird, awkward or stupid because they do things in a different way.

He spent the bulk of his presentation showing off his beatboxing skills, looping one beat on top of another.


Our next speaker, Anisul Karim, is a researcher with the Transform Nutrition Consortium.


The reasons behind child mortality and maternal ill health, two of the Millennium Development Goals set by the United Nations, are interestingly simple, according to Karim. Historical data shows that women who are educated experience reduced child mortality rates and improved maternal health.

“Education empowers from within. It helps in making the right choices,” Karim explained. “The mother is more aware of nutritional needs if she is educated.”

Studies have shown that Bangladesh has the fastest prolonged reductions in childhood stunting in recorded history. Bangladesh surpasses Pakistan and India, even after spending less on public health.

So what did Bangladesh do right that neighbouring countries did not? A female secondary school stipend program launched in 1990 made all the difference. The program was so successful that Bangladesh women now surpasses men in secondary education.

Karim warns us that Bangladesh’s current rate of child mortality (41%) is still high. Bangladesh is still one of the bottom 10 countries in the world in this regard.

“We need a paradigm shift…we need an approach that is holistic,” explains Anisul, referring to his diagram of a 360 degree nutrition scheme.


Our final speaker from Session 3 was Tanzeem Choudhury, director of the People-Aware Computing group.


“How many of you have taken care of or supported a person with cancer? With a heart disease? With a mental illness?” Tanzeem Choudhury asked.

Not surprisingly, the numbers for the last question were staggeringly low. “Mental illness is an illness,” confirms Tanzeem. “If treated, people who are mentally ill can be successful, powerful, productive, and brilliant.”

Around 1 in 6 people suffer from mental illness. Signs of mental illness include unusual sleeping patterns and behavioral factors like the pace at which we speak and how we walk.

Amazingly, people look at their phones 100-150 times per day. This gives researchers the opportunity to use technology as an early indicator that something might be happening to a person’s mental health being.

However, even with technological support, treating mental illness is multidimensional and requires social participation. Tanzeem reminded the audience that there is nothing to be ashamed in regards to depression.