Carnegie Mellon University
March 22, 2013

Press Release: Carnegie Mellon’s LeDuc and Kryder Among Global Leaders Addressing Worldwide Problems at London Conference

Contact: Chriss Swaney / 412-268-5776 /

Mark KryderPhil LeDucPITTSBURGH—Carnegie Mellon University’s Mark Kryder (far right) and Philip R. LeDuc joined global thought leaders including Bill Gates, March 12-13, at the Grand Challenges Summit at Savoy Place in London to share ideas about solving the world’s most critical problems.

“This was a wonderful opportunity to meet leaders from a broad sector of academia, industry and government,” said LeDuc, a professor of mechanical engineering with courtesy appointments in the Biomedical Engineering, Biological Sciences and Computational Biology departments.

Kryder, former director of CMU’s Data Storage Systems Center and a University Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, said it was an opportunity to gain better insight into many areas where data storage could make a contribution. “In addition to hearing from some great speakers, there were many panel sessions dealing with global challenges and much discussion after each panel. It was a stimulating experience.”

The Global Grand Challenges Summit is a major new initiative sponsored by the National Academy of Engineering, the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Chinese Academy of Engineering. Meetings are planned every two years with the next meeting scheduled for 2015 in China.

The summit was designed to have leading international engineering thinkers and innovators share ideas with the next generation of engineers and policymakers on how to solve the world’s most pressing challenges.

“It was a great event because it gave me the opportunity to build and develop the collaborations, networks and tools needed to solve our common global challenges,” said LeDuc, who won a competitive Grand Challenge Explorations Award in 2011 from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to explore nutrition for healthy infants and children in underdeveloped countries. LeDuc along with CMU biomedical engineering Ph.D candidate Mary Beth Wilson are adjusting cell mechanics of certain leafy vegetables in Africa to make the vegetation more palatable for malnourished infants and children.