Having grown up in a big family where a few of the extended family members have been living abroad, I always had a strong urge to go abroad and settle there. So, the term ‘BRAIN DRAIN’ was not that uncommon to me. Moreover, some people would even go a little further about it using terms as ‘Being ungrateful to your motherland’. Honestly, I never had the courage to reply to that because to some extent I started believing that these statements will not be any less true for me once I go abroad.
But now, I have earned a different perspective, and the question that I have in my mind is- “Why Not Turn Brain Drain into Brain Gain”?
On February 26, 2019, the first Convention of NRB (Non-Resident Bangladeshi) Engineers (CONE 2019) started at the Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel, Dhaka and it gives me immense pride to say that I was one of the lucky visitors there.
As I walked into the venue, I could instantly feel the change of ambiance around me. There were people of all ages, everyone talking with everyone, old friends meeting and greeting each other, reporters taking interviews, engineers sharing new inventions, business people talking about market values and what not. It was a spur of the moment and I instantly feltthat day I was going to go home with some fresh and new thoughts.
The first session I attended was a seminar on ‘Secure Connected Government’. The moderator, Dr. Nazmul Ula started this session with a speaker lineup full of NRB Engineers. The chief guest was Architect Yeafesh Osman, Honorable Minister, Ministry of Science and Technology.
At first, Mr. Abdul Alim, AABGM, New York, USA talked about Cybercrime which is a huge threat to almost every company and government agency in the world. He showed statistics that there are about 400 new attack vectors in every 60 second, of which 70% go undetected. It takes 172days in average for the APAC countries to detect average data breach with an average cost of 3.62 million . Then he presented his idea about End to End Cybersecurity Solution, which can help Bangladesh to deal this challenge. Next talk was Mr. Azfar Hossain’s “DevOps as Application Life Cycle Management”, where he discussed how the US Government and commercial entities are migrating their key development operations to the Cloud. He talked about a pipeline team building, which will ensure reduced cycle time and better quality as well.
The conversation then proceeded with Faisal Quader who presented his project proposal of establishing a Comprehensive Cybersecurity Platform for Bangladesh , along with labs for hands on workshop regarding this. After this, Quari Zaman shared his idea of building up a Sentient Nation, i.e an Intelligent Nation ; which presents a best practice framework for adopting Artificial Intelligence in E-Government by adopting Secure Government Cloud Services in Bangladesh. The last speaker of this session was Mr. Tahmeed Rabwho discussed about securing a nation’s banking infrastructure.
At the end of the session, the chief guest Mr. Yeafesh Osman shared some stories from his life and displayed his insights in poetic verses. As a practicing architect, he asked everyone present in the room to learn the language of the people because that is the only way of bringing solutions to any problem. In his words, ‘The best outcome of science is when it is continuously evolving’.
The second seminar of the day was ‘Innovation and Entrepreneurship for the 4th Industrial Revolution’. This session had many NRB Engineers as speakers as well who presented multiple proposals for Bangladesh to actively participate in the 4th Industrial Revolution. To walk side by side with the ever-growing world, our country needs to focus on the areas of Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Space technologies and all the speakers were able to successfully shed light upon that.
One of the speakers, Mr. Mizanul Haq, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Boston, USA illuminated the idea of Zero Robotics for Bangladesh. Zero Robotics is a robotics programming competition where the robots are SPHERES (Synchronized Position Hold Engage and Reorient Experimental Satellites) inside the International Space Station. He said it is named zero since it runs in zero gravity. According to him, to build up a successful nation it is required to build our children accordingly, hence zero robotics will be a kick start to that. Being the Zero Robotics System Administrator and Architect, he also said that if he is given the facilities and assistance he would be able to set up such labs in our motherland.
Mr.Md Abul Kalam Azad, Principal Coordinator (SDG Affairs), Prime Minister’s Office proudly shared that Bangladesh is one of those countries which has prepared and approved Delta Plan 2100. He also mentioned that although we have missed 1st and 2nd industrial revolution and just partially participated in the 3rd, we can still bring major improvement through the 4th industrial revolution by using our same land, water, human force, and brain. He described that how proper data mining has brought significant changes in just a random store in the USA , so we have to look forward to implement similar usage of data analysis here.
The chief guest of this session was the Honorable State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Md. Shahriar Alam. He re-stated that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will always be open for the NRB Engineers whom he welcomes wholeheartedly , because he truly believes that Bangladesh will only progress in the true sense when all its extraordinary minds around the world will start working collectively.
At the end of that day, I felt that the fact NRB Engineers willing to implement such projects in their native land proves that they have not forgotten what the nation has given them. Ultimately it becomes a Brain Gain initiated by Brain Drain.
As Engr. Ghulam Mohammed Alomgir, an NRB, a BUET Alumni and Chairman of Max group said, “We are ready to serve the nation. Join us from around the globe. This is time to give back to the nation that gave us the opportunity to be an Engineer.Let us BUILD TOGETHER.”
 Abdul Alim: Cybersecurity Solution for Bangladesh
 Faisal Quader: Cyber Security
Quazi Zaman: Sentient Nation- Secure Government Cloud Services
TahmeedRab: Central Bank Cyber Risk Management Project