Global Trade and Investment Forum


CIBA's Seventh Global Forum, held on April 7, 2022, focused on The Southern Tier and the World: Recharging Sustainable Economic Growth with New Battery Technologies. Discussions addressed the future possibilities of clean energy from new battery technologies. The goal of the discussions was to discover opportunities in worldwide connections with clean energy for the economy in New York's Southern Tier. Attendees and distinguishes speakers considered business investments overseas, international partnerships and global markets to gauge a sense of competition and explore room for expanding business.

Learn about what industry experts said during panel discussions, how the Southern Tier is becoming a national leader in green energy, and more! Read Lorin Miller's article in the News section!


KEYNOTE ADDRESS. Distinguished Binghamton University Professor and Nobel Prize Laureate M. Stanley Whittingham tells the story of the evolution and implementation of battery technology from his start at Esso (now Exxon Mobil Corporation) in the 1970s to present day. He emphasizes that with the world moving toward renewable energy, we must keep in mind where we will store all of it. Whittingham speaks about the need for a regional supply chain and how it will build a future for safe and secure green energy. In a short Q&A moderated by Andrew Karolyi, Dean of the Cornell SC Johnson College of Business, Whittingham answers questions regarding sustainability, manufacturing, and community engagement. Watch Video at 

ENERGY STORAGE AS THE BRIDGE TO A CLEAN ENERGY FUTURE. CIBA Senior Policy Fellow Ed Kowalewski moderates a discussion between William Acker (Executive Director of NY-BEST), Craig Connelly (Director of Research and Development at NYSERDA), and Chaitanya Sharma (CEO of iM3NY). Topics in this panel include finding an ideal technology profile for energy storage, an introduction to the Endicott Gigafactory and what they will produce, and how a regional supply chain and non-nickel non-cobalt chemistry will help set Southern Tier cell production apart from competitors. Watch Video at 

TRANSITIONING FROM LAB SCALE TO MANUFACTURING SCALE. Carol Miller, Executive Director of the Alliance for Manufacturing and Technology, moderates a discussion between Jennifer De Souza (Vice President for Energy Solutions, Procurement and Leasing, The Raymond Corporation), Emmanuel Giannelis (Vice President for Research and Innovation, Cornell University), and Per Stromhaug (Associate Vice President for Innovation and Economic Development, Binghamton University). Panelists discuss the bridge between science and business, nurturing early technologies and methodologies in academia, and building up a commercialization ecosystem in the Southern Tier. Watch Video at 

THE SOUTHERN TIER AS AN EMERGING NATIONAL LEADER IN BATTERY INNOVATION AND COMMUNITY DECARBONIZATION. In a discussion led by Jeffrey Smith, Co-Founder of Tier Energy Network, panelists Shailesh Upreti (CEO of C4V and Chairman of iM3NY), Clifford Olin (Chief Business Development Officer, C4V), and Luis Aguirre-Torres (Director of Sustainability, City of Ithaca), talk about the "smart-giga" lithium-ion technology at the Gigafactory lab, Ithaca's Green New Deal, and a blueprint for decarbonization. Watch Video at 

THE SOUTHERN TIER SOFT LANDING PROGRAM: WELCOMING INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS INVESTMENT IN THE CLEAN TECH SECTOR. Elena Iankova, CIBA Director and Director of the Southern Tier Soft Landing Program, talks about the new program and its mission to attract international businesses to the Southern Tier. Michael Jagielski (Director of the Southern Tier Clean Energy Incubator Program at the Koffman Southern Tier Incubator) discusses the Soft Landing Program’s relationship with the Incubator and how the two programs will bolster an ecosystem where international businesses can thrive locally. Michael Mahan (Director of Cleanwatts Americas) discusses the benefits for this Portuguese startup from its affiliation with the Koffman Incubator and the Soft Landing Program. Luis Aguirre-Torres (City of Ithaca) talks about investing in infrastructure and talent to support a clean energy future. David Ding (Director of Taiwan Investment and Trade Office in New York) discusses the benefits of bilateral trade cooperation between Taiwan and the United States. Watch Video at 



The CIBA Forum was “a very effective seminar describing the challenges and opportunities facing us as the area embarks on sustainable recharges [of] economic growth with an emphasis on battery energy storage. Excellently coordinated by Binghamton and Cornell universities. This hopefully will let us all work together to rebuild the economy of the Southern Tier so it again leads the world just as it did with IBM and Link Flight Simulation." M. Stanley Whittingham, Binghamton University Distinguished Professor and 2019 Nobel Prize Laureate in Chemistry

“The CIBA Forum sent strong messages of Binghamton and Cornell universities working together. This is wonderful. I have always hoped that Binghamton University and Cornell would collaborate. As two of New York’s ARC region’s most prestigious universities, the effect of the collaboration has to represent a situation where combination is stronger than the sum of the parts!” George Korchowsky, Program Manager of NYS Appalachian Regional Development Program at New York State Department of State

“I would like to thank the Center for International Business Advancement (CIBA) for holding the 7th Global Trade and Investment Forum, as it was an honor to attend this meaningful event and discuss clean energy and the energy storage industry with the participants. I was especially inspired by Professor Whittingham’s keynote address explaining that the present global supply chain is untenable. As I mentioned at the event, Taiwan Economic Minister Mei-Hua Wang and US Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo announced a new ‘Technology Trade and Investment Collaboration (TTIC) Framework’ to promote bilateral supply chain cooperation, such as clean energy, between Taiwan and the US. The Southern Tier area of New York provides a lot of business and market potential for Taiwan. We are looking forward to collaborating closely with Empire State Development, CIBA, and other stakeholders to further promote bilateral economic and business relations. I look forward to participating in this meaningful event again next time.” David Ding, Director of the Taiwan Investment and Trade Office in New York

“It was great to hear all the speakers discuss the potential opportunities and challenges facing new battery technologies and the exciting future being built in the Southern Tier.” – Michael Winn, Managing Director at Scale Facilitation 

"After my exciting remote internship in the Summer of 2021 with the Koffman Incubator and as a student members of the Tier Energy Network (TEN), I was looking for an opportunity to come to Binghamton and meet everyone because face-to-face interaction is essential to me. And there couldn’t be a more significant opportunity than the CIBA Seventh Global Forum. Aside from enjoying this outstanding performance from Liz Callaway, the best part for me was the presentation about Li-ion Battery technology and the visit to the Gigafactory in Endicott, which is a testimony that Lab to Market is a reality in the Southern Tier. This event brought me meaningful connections from Binghamton University, Cornell University, C4V and iM3NY, and I am very grateful to Elena Iankova, Director of CIBA, for the invitation.” – Marcellin Adjoumane, Master student in Polymer Chemistry at SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, Syracuse

“I’m glad I was able to meet some of the participants, and get a sense of what the future could bring to our ‘Green Valley of Opportunity.’ And I hope, in some small way, our performance inspires the business innovators and academic attendees to include the arts in the planning and development of the Binghamton region.”  Ronald Tierno, Musician

Held annually, CIBA's Global Trade and Investment Forum is a venue for business executives, palicy makers, technology and academic leaders to connect and explore opportunities for regional growth through global connections such as exports to international markets, attraction of foreign business investment, and the advancement of international strategic partnerships. The Forum welcomes innovative thinkers and experts who would identify and outline the challenges and opportunities presented by changing trends in the global economy and politics.

 Check out the previous forums by clicking on the links below.