ObesityWeek Q&A

A Unique & Valuable Opportunity for Stakeholders to Come Together

The editors of the TOS eNews had an opportunity to talk with Martin Binks, PhD, about the upcoming ObesityWeek event. Dr. Binks sits on the Board of Managers for the meeting and has been intimately involved with the planning and marketing of the event. Read below for his thoughts on the meeting development and some highlights.

 

Q: As a member of the Board of Managers, you've been intimately involved with the planning for the inaugural ObesityWeek. What are you most excited about for this event? And why?

A: Historically, those who are dedicated to solving the obesity epidemic whether through basic science research, clinical treatment and research, surgical intervention and research or public health and advocacy perspectives have attended discipline-specific meetings spread throughout the year in various venues. ObesityWeek provides an opportunity for all stakeholders to come together in the same city, under the same roof every year! The many current partners for the 2013 meeting speaks to the fact that many agree that such an event was needed and valuable.

 

Q: Is there anything specific about the scientific, educational and/or networking opportunities at ObesityWeek 2013 that will be different or more interesting from past meetings?

The opportunity for professionals from ASMBS and TOS to attend both meetings is especially exciting. The opportunity for all, whether primarily basic science, clinical or surgical focused to see the latest science and innovation in other disciplines can only serve to improve transdisciplinary communication and understanding.

As for networking, the shared venues (posters and exhibits) and social/networking events are where some of my most productive and rewarding friendships and collaborative opportunities have emerged over the years. The expansion to include all attendees from all our partnering organizations and industry in these events is very exciting!

 

Q: I hear we already have high numbers of exhibitors attending the event. What do you think this means for the exhibit hall, and other opportunities to learn and network?

First of all; having attended ASMBS for several years - surgeons have really cool stuff to play with! But seriously, a large multidisciplinary exhibit hall like this one has attracted a higher number of very high quality companies that will meet the needs of every participant regardless of what perspective they approach obesity from or what discipline they are representing. In addition, even viewing products and services outside your discipline is a learning experience! Every year, I see products in the exhibit hall that inform me about specific disciplines or methodologies that I may not always be exposed to.

The poster sessions of ASMBS and TOS being housed in the same area is very exciting. In addition to being able to explore the scientific presentations of each society conveniently, I think this setting is among the best ways to generate cross-disciplinary and cross-society (TOS - ASMBS) conversations. Furthermore, poster sessions are often a wonderful way to see what our early career investigators have to offer. I never fail to be impressed with what I see coming from the future leaders of our professional societies.

Similarly, combined symposia, networking and social events give us all an opportunity to interact both professionally and socially in ways that can only improve mutual understanding and cross-disciplinary communication and collaboration. 

 

Q: The meeting has been 5 years in the planning with ASMBS. What are your thoughts on TOS combining resources with ASMBS to host this event?

A: Among the missions of both TOS and ASMBS is advocacy. In addition to all the scientific and professional advantages and economies of scale produced by joining forces at one venue; the value of TOS, ASMBS and all our other partners coming together to speak with one voice on behalf of those who suffer from the disease of obesity cannot be overstated. While points of view on how to achieve success as we fight to solve obesity may differ among our members by times, as a group, ObesityWeek attendees are unified in the message that obesity is a serious health concern that requires immediate action and evidence-based solutions. I would hope that the event is well-attended by media, corporate and political and public policy representatives who will join us in becoming part of the solution.

(Please note: External Links are provided as a courtesy. The Obesity Society is not responsible for the content on sites accessed through external links.)

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