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Facilitator's Note: Welcome 

May 15, 2020

Welcome to the Pandemic Supermind Activation exercise! 

My name is David Sun Kong, Ph.D., and I am Director of the MIT Media Lab’s Community Biotechnology Initiative. I will be serving as the facilitator of this 3-week exercise, which will begin on May 18 and conclude on June 5. It’s truly an honor and privilege to work with you all in what we hope will be an invigorating and creative process that will yield meaningful and impactful insights.

During this exercise, we will analyze together aspects of the following question:

How can we develop pandemic resilience—the ability for society to recover quickly from global disease outbreaks—both in resolving the current COVID-19 pandemic and in building the public health and other infrastructure to prepare for future pandemics?    

You will join in conversation over 150 leaders from around the world with a diverse array of backgrounds and expertise, including scientific and technology experts, social scientists, public health officials, government representatives, medical professionals, policy experts, and more.  

As a reminder, the Pandemic Supermind Activation exercise is conducted entirely online so that you may fit it into your schedule at your convenience. Details for how to log onto the platform are included below. 

As you engage with the platform, I encourage you to be creative and expansive in your thinking. Please also be aware that while we will share the insights we glean from this process with the public, the conversation itself will be private for participants. All contributors are asked to adhere to the Chatham House Rule. For more information please visit:  

The exercise will consist of three phases, each one lasting about one week. On most days during the exercises I will send out a facilitator note. These notes will provide instructions about what (and how) to contribute at each phase. The notes will also contain brief summaries of the inputs so far and address any elements of the process that require clarification. 

As for immediate next steps:  

·       Log in asap: You should have received an email from Pandemic Supermind Activation ( with a unique log-in link (URL). Please follow the instructions in the email and then log in to the site asap. You will have to do this once on each device you plan on using. If you haven’t received the email, please contact or

·       Begin participating on May 18, 2020: The first phase of activity will open at 9AM Eastern US time on Monday, May 18. At that time, I will send out a note with specific instructions to get started on our first activities. Again, you can respond at your earliest convenience. If at any point throughout the process you have questions or comments, please don’t hesitate to contact me. 

Thank you so much again for sharing your time, expertise, and creativity. These challenging times require expansive thinking and innovation, so I hope this exercise will enable us to collectively generate truly impactful solutions that can make a positive impact on the world. 



David Sun Kong, Ph.D.