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Linda Qian

Linda Qian

Linda focuses on CSR communications both internally and externally with Intel's global Corporate Responsibility Office. She graduated in December 2009 with a Bachelor of Science in Conservation and Resource Studies from the UC Berkeley College of Natural Resources.

Follow Linda on Twitter at @lindalqian and @Intelinvolved. She is also active on LinkedIn, Google+, Facebook and Instagram.
RECENT BLOG POSTS

Welcome to the Club: 25 Tech Awards Finalists Announced

The Tech Museum of Innovation in Silicon Valley recently announced the 25 finalists of The Tech Awards developing creative and innovative opportunities to use technology to benefit humanity around the world in five categories; Environment, Education, Health, Economic Development and Young … Read more >

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When Opportunity Knocks: Advice for Budding Entrepreneurs

This blog was posted on behalf of Arvind Sodhani, executive vice president of Intel Corporation and president of Intel Capital. Intel Capital, Intel’s strategic investment arm directs the company’s external investments, mergers and acquisitions in support of Intel’s strategic objectives and helps … Read more >

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Ride Along with Algae Girl through Caltech and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab

This blog was posted on behalf of Evie Sobczak, 16, of St. Petersburg, Fla. Evie  received the Innovation Exploration Award at the 2013 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair for her research on algae oil production. The award included a … Read more >

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Growing Up with Science

Intel STS 2013 finalist Sara VolzThis post was written by Sara Volz, a finalist in the 2013 Intel Science Talent Search, the nation’s most prestigious pre-college science competition. Intel STS alumni have made extraordinary contributions to science and hold more than 100 of the world’s most coveted science and math honors, including the Nobel Prize and the National Medal of Science. Learn more about Sara and the other 2013 Intel Science Talent Search finalists here.

 

I never could have predicted how much research would change my life—not when my first-ever science project, entitled “Which Freezes Fastest—Water, Milk or Juice?”, won my school’s kindergarten division by dint of being the only entrant; not when, as a 6th grader at the state fair for the first time, I was in awe of the top senior high projects; and not even when my stunned footsteps finally found the main exhibit hall of the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

I found my passion in seventh grade—alternative energy—and it simply hasn’t left me alone. My work on algae biofuels for the past four years has consumed my life, and my bedroom. I’ve spent a good portion of my high school career begging, borrowing, and stealing saving for the materials to convert my room into a homespun laboratory. I’m fairly proud of the result: it comes complete with an appallingly clattery old centrifuge, glassware I got for my birthday, a microscope I got for Christmas, a rather handsome set of micropipettes, and, of course, the requisite bubbling flasks of green goo!

Some people have asked me what inspired my ideas and how I stumbled across a topic that has been so perfect for me. Upon reflection, I realize that in any given year, the truth is I’ve never been all that confident about my project. I always felt like my work wasn’t coming together—I wasn’t getting the answers, or the experiment didn’t work out right, or the analysis still had one or three or ten kinks to be worked out—but I kept plugging away.

My battered notebooks come everywhere with me. I’m persistent in asking for help—the Internet is my best friend in looking up research papers and emailing scientists with questions and for the chance to do some really cool work. This doggedness, more than anything else, has paid off. Thanks to meeting some very generous and wonderful researchers, I can now drive up to a university a few days a week to do chemical analyses, travel a few hours to a farther institution for molecular work, and simply go home to do growth experiments.

The past year has felt a little unreal to me: starting with a summer at the Research Science Institute (the best six weeks of my life, with amazing research and the amazing-er people), building with the news of my acceptance for undergraduate study at the beautiful Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and culminating with being named an Intel Science Talent Search finalist.

My algae have introduced me to a whole new world of vibrant new people and opportunities that I can’t wait to meet.

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The Farther Backward You Can Look, the Farther Forward You Can See

This blog was posted on behalf of Jocelyn Cascio, a manager in Intel’s Supply Chain Environmental, Social and Governance organization.

 
As Winston Churchill once said, “The farther backward you can look, the farther forward you can see.” During the holiday season, I spent some time reflecting on the work Intel’s Supply Chain Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) Team did during 2012. I’ve been part of this effort for the past 3+ years of my 16 years at Intel and I think this was a year of genuinely meaningful progress in supplier sustainability that gets me energized for what it helps make possible in 2013. I’ll focus on just three of the key programs that are representative of our broader efforts: an expanded focus on supplier transparency, our audit progress; and, our first annual Supplier Sustainability Leadership Summit.

Intel employees during the EICC audit of our Chengdu, China factory.

In 2012, we increased transparency expectations of our key suppliers by setting specific requirements and timelines for CSR Reporting for our Top 75 suppliers. To support this initiative, we provided training, in partnership with the Global Reporting Initiative, to help suppliers get started or make improvements to their reporting practices. This training was made available to all Intel suppliers, both live and on-demand, free of charge. Additionally, we partnered with Microsoft and Hewlett Packard to successfully propose the creation of a Supplier Transparency Work Group to the Electronics Industry Citizenship Coalition (EICC) Board of Directors and we are now part of the Work group, collaborating with other member companies to drive better industry standards.

 

We also expanded and improved our supplier ESG auditing in several ways in the past year: we increased the number of audits by 63%, to ensure we were gathering data from a robust cross section of our suppliers; we expanded and strengthened the ESG content of our Quality Assessment audits for closer integration and broader reach; and, we proactively commissioned a 3rd party audit of Intel’s own Chengdu, China factory. Collectively, these actions resulted in a significant increase in our organization’s competency to analyze, understand and improve upon the current state of ESG in our supply chain. The deep dive analysis of both our 2011 and 2012 audit data has helped us move from simply managing compliance to identifying broader system-level issues and opportunities for supplier education and capacity building around  challenges such as working hours and rest days. And, we’ve been able to compare and contrast our own audit results to those of our suppliers and identify areas where we have internal strengths and can share best practices, very similar to what we have done with quality and engineering challenges for many years.

First Annual Intel Supplier Sustainability Leadership Summit – Shanghai, China, September 2012

While we had previously incorporated ESG topics into our supplier training and events, for the first time we held a two-day conference in Shanghai (the 2012 Sustainability Leadership Summit) dedicated to supplier sustainability, to share some of our best practices and bring together a multi-stakeholder group to collaborate on key challenges. Because it was a first time event, we weren’t sure if our suppliers would be interested enough to invest the time and we were also uncertain how openly a diverse group of stakeholders would work together. We had hoped for 100-125 attendees and invited a mix of senior executives from suppliers with operations in China, government officials, leading NGOs, press, and fellow travelers from other industries. What transpired in the months leading up to the event in late September was both exciting and a bit daunting: we were overwhelmed by the positive responses and had an attendance of 185!

Intel employees from Supply Chain and our Chengdu and Dalian, China factories at the Sustainability Leadership Summit in Shanghai, China

It was eye opening and encouraging to see the very diverse group of participants at the Summit openly engaging, some for the first time, on very real and pressing challenges like overtime, employee health and safety, environmental management and corporate social responsibility reporting. We heard many different perspectives and learned a tremendous amount from the various panel discussions, keynotes and conversations. The Summit also included interactive small group roundtable sessions which helped create a resource guide that contains a collective list of key challenges, best practices and recommended next steps. And, all of the learnings we’ve gained will be integrated into our work moving forward and based on the positive response to this year’s event, are already beginning planning the 2013 Sustainability Leadership Summit.

 

 

We know ESG challenges and issues remain in our supply chain and we continue to work diligently to ensure meaningful progress happens at as fast a pace as possible. Looking back on 2012 and on the progress we’ve made inspires me as we move ahead into 2013.

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Collaboration: The Heart of Scientific Discovery

 This post was written by Huihui “Angela” Fan (pictured, center), a winner at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair. As part of her prize at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, Angela received a trip in December 2012 to the Stockholm International Youth Science Seminar (SIYSS), an annual weeklong event for young international scientists that provides opportunities to attend various Nobel festivities, including the Nobel Prize Award Ceremony.

 

 

Collaboration, they say, is the heart of scientific discovery.

 During my recent trip to Stockholm, I spent eight days with 25 young scientists from 16 different countries. Each of us had interesting aspects of culture to share, remarkably different school experiences, and fascinating stories to tell about growing up. It was wonderful that such a diverse group could be connected by our love of science research.

Despite our research in different areas, we spent hours explaining our projects to each other and discussing what it was like to pursue research in different parts of the world. Some of the students had performed research as part of school classes, while others simply liked to build objects in their free time. Others required laboratory assistance from nearby universities, while some students performed research independently. We swapped stories about our experiences at science competitions and discovered that many of us had been at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair together, and we all wondered why we didn’t meet earlier.

Science did not only connect us as students, but on the professional level as research collaborators, as well. For instance, on day three of the seminar, we attended a series of Nobel lectures, where the laureates explained their lifetime of work. All of the lectures had a huge emphasis on research’s collaborative nature. It was wonderful to see all of the people who contributed to the effort of discovering such landmarks in science.

At the end of the week, I couldn’t believe that we were all going to leave and return to our respective countries. It seemed impossible to me that a mere eight days ago, we were complete and utter strangers. We had been through so much together – from running around in the Stockholm cold to sitting eagerly in anticipation as this year’s laureates received their awards. A common interest in science brought us all together, gave us initial avenues of conversation to pursue when we were all awkwardly scared to talk, and connected us all deeply. We traded emails and “friended” each other on Facebook, swapped home addresses with the promise to send postcards, and hugged and cried on the last day as taxis shipped us out to the airport. My trip to Stockholm was an incredible, irreplaceable experience that truly revealed that science, at its core, is an international effort characterized by friendship and collaboration.

 

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