First of its Kind INNOVATION ASEAN Attracts 18,000 Viewers in South East Asia

On August 14, more than 6000 people across South East Asia went on Facebook Live to watch Innovation ASEAN: a Silicon Valley Recipe for Success, a live-streamed event organized by U.S.-ASEAN Connect and the U.S. Embassy in Jakarta, the U.S. Embassy in Kuala Lumpur, and the U.S. Embassy in Manila,connected through Google Video Chat. Innovation ASEAN has reached over 18,000 online users to date, and more than 200 participants joined the in-person events in Jakarta, Penang, and Manila – to discuss the three elements of Silicon Valley’s success and their applicability to ASEAN: STEAM education, the role of government and digital policy approaches, and access to capital.

In Penang, two Silicon Valley executives, Rekha Pai Kamath and Erin Keeley, talked about the importance of STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and math) education and diversity in talent for current and future innovation start-ups. In Jakarta, Facebook Head of Public Policy for Indonesia, Ruben Hattari, and Go Jek Chief of Public Policy and Government Relations, Shinto Nugroho, talked about the role of government in growing a digital economy. They highlighted the importance of the free flow of data for start-ups and SMEs, and the need for cross-border data flows to ensure robust cyber security protection. In Manila, Carlo Calimon of the Let’s Go Foundation discussed the role of early venture capital funding for start-ups and the importance of creating a culture of friendly competition and sharing of ideas for successful growth of the digital economy. Live audiences in all three countries asked questions to the panelists, with the last question coming from a Facebook Live participant.

This event – a first of its kind – showed the true power of ASEAN and U.S.-ASEAN cooperation. To watch the recorded event, visit: