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ASEF Podcast

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The American Slovenian Education Foundation (ASEF) is the leading foundation fostering talented individuals and higher education of deserving Slovenians worldwide through its exchange Fellowship programs and promotion of Slovenian culture and language. In the ASEF Podcast, we interview professors about their research, best practices in their field, and their vision for the development of the field in Slovenia as well as collaboration amongst Slovenians worldwide.

Visit us at https://www.asef.net/ or reach us at podcast@asef.net.

The podcast's introductory theme is the "C Minor Jazz Blues Backing Track" by Quist.

30 Episodes
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In this episode, we discuss computer vision, distinguishing it from computer graphics, and delve into the challenges of 3D computer vision. We also examine the current state of autonomous driving research and discuss deepfakes.We host two experts in the field:Žan Gojčič a senior research scientist at Nvidia, with a research focus is on 3D deep learning, weakly supervised learning, and domain adaptation.Aljoša Osep a senior research scientist at Nvidia, working on learning to understand the dy...
In this episode, we dive into another part of the technology transfer and entrepreneurship ecosystem - venture capital (VC) and business angels. We discuss the different VC funds in Slovenia, how startups should approach funding, opportunities and challenges in the local area, as well as success stories in the region, and perspectives abroad. We host three experts from the Slovenian venture capital scene:Nina Dremelj, Managing Partner at Vesna deep-tech Fund, President of Slovenian Business A...
In this episode we talk about University Spin-Outs. How is it different from a “classic” start-up? What is the process of founding a univesity spin-out in Slovenia?We look at the journey of two such companies: prof. Tomaž Skrbinšek presents DIVJALabs, where they work on molecular genetics and bioinformatics for biodiversity conservation and research, while Blaž Zoubek, PhD, tells us about SPEKTRAL - the structural engineering and consulting company, both spin-outs from the University of Ljubl...
In this episode, we host Dr. Jure Knez, Founder of Dewesoft, a world-leading hi-tech company for test and measurement solutions, and vice-president of the Slovenian Business Club. We talked with Dr. Knez to gain insights about the company's origins, the role of artificial intelligence in test and measurement tools, his views on entrepreneurship, his role and vision regarding the Katapult startup environment, and the main challenges entrepreneurs and companies face in Slovenia. In additi...
In this episode, we host Katarina Van Der Linden, an accomplished Slovenian musician currently residing and working in Australia. Katarina pursued her music education at the Academy of Music in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Before immigrating to Australia in 2015, she taught in various primary, high, and music schools in Slovenia. Her music education started in Dravograd and continued in Žalec, Velenje, and Ljubljana. She studied saxophone, piano, and music pedagogy. While teaching at Rudolf Maister H...
In this episode, we host three guests related to healthcare in Slovenia:Dr. Alenka Kolar, Director of the General Directorate for Digitalisation in Healthcare, SloveniaGašper Čehovin, Managing Director and Partner of Parsek, a company developing a multi-purpose platform for supporting integrated care aiming to reduce administrative burden in the healthcare sector significantlyFederico Potočnik, dr. med., a physician specializing in infectious diseases and a graduate of the Stanford MSx Progra...
In Episode 24, we talk with Dr. Janez Potočnik, Co-Chair of the International Resource Panel, Partner at SYSTEMIQ, and advisor to thought-leading institutions such as the European Forest Institute. Listen as we discuss about climate change.Dr. Janez Potočnik's academic journey began with honors from the Faculty of Economics at the University of Ljubljana. He pursued further studies at the same university, completing his master's degree in 1989 and obtaining a Ph.D. in 1993. In July 1994, he a...
In this episode, we host three guests related to the entrepreneurial landscape in Slovenia:Charlotte Taft, Education Coordinator at the US Embassy in LjubljanaDanijela Pavlica, Head of Educational Content at POPRI, from Primorska Technology ParkJakob Gajšek, director of LUI, Ljubljana University IncubatorWe talk about youth entrepreneurship in Slovenia and the world. What is the state of youth entrepreneurship in Slovenia? What is being done in Slovenia and the region? We discuss best practic...
In this episode, we host Mr. Boštjan Gorjup, ex-president of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia and Managing Director at BSH Adriatic East, the largest manufacturer of small home appliances in Europe, one of the largest companies in Slovenia and also one of the most important companies in BSH. We talked with Mr. Gorjup to gain insights about the company's growth, the role of artificial intelligence in smart manufacturing, and recent challenges related to the floods in Slovenia. ...
In this episode, we host Teja Tegelj, an accomplished Slovenian artist. Teja Tegelj earned her bachelor's degree at the Faculty of Education, Program Art Pedagogy at the University of Ljubljana. She later pursued a Master of Science in Art Pedagogy. During her studies, she took part in a student exchange in Germany. She also researched aboriginal art in Australia, which greatly influenced her art expression development. She was awarded the Grand Prix of the International Visual Art Award Ex-T...
Episode #20: Sociology

Episode #20: Sociology

2023-05-2055:21

In Episode 20, we talk with Dr. Tamara Trošt, Associate Professor at the School of Economics and Business at the University of Ljubljana, and Dr. Manja Klemenčič, Associate Senior Lecturer on Sociology offering higher education courses at the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard University and in General Education at Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Listen as they discuss the field of sociology.Dr. Tamara Trošt is an ASEF Tutor and Associate Professor at the University ...
In this episode, we host Mr. Tone Stanovnik, Founder and CEO of Špica International, a regional leader in Time Management and Access Control focusing on Workforce Management, Supply Chain Management, Sales Force Automation, and Asset Management. We talk with Mr. Stanovnik about the start of his entrepreneurial career and its development. He shares his insights into his company's growth, his views about efficiency and how it can be enhanced, and the many challenges they faced, such as adapting...
In this episode, we host Polona Kunaver Ličen (Lona Verlich), a Slovenian painter, illustrator, graphic designer, exhibition creator, and musician. Polona Kunaver Ličen earned her bachelor's and master's degree at the Academy of Fine Arts, Ljubljana. During her master's degree, she spent a year in Helsinki, Finland, studying illustration and graphics. In 2006, she won the first prize in Austria for her illustrated book "The Secret of Old Man Bertold" at the author's book competition. She is a...
Episode #17: Chemistry

Episode #17: Chemistry

2023-02-2001:06:21

In Episode 17, we talk with Dr. Vita Godec, Managing Director at Lenis farmacevtika d.o.o. and ASEF professor Dr. David Sarlah, Associate Professor at the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Listen as they discuss the field of chemistry.Dr. Vita Godec is an ASEF Mentor who received her BSc in Biochemistry and her Ph.D. in Organic Chemistry from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia. Later she received her MBA from IEDC-Bled School of Man...
In this episode, we host Mr. Marko Bitenc, Founder and CEO of GenePlanet, one of the most prominent and innovative personal genetics companies, and Co-Founder of Universal Diagnostics, which is developing primary prevention methods for cancer through the use of blood tests. We talk with Mr. Bitenc about the start of his entrepreneurial career and its incredible development. He shares with us his insights into the growth of his companies, the products they offer, and the motivation behind them...
In this episode, we host Slovenian academic painter Matej Metlikovič. Matej Metlikovič earned his bachelor's degree in 1978 at the Academy of Fine Arts, Ljubljana, under professors Štefan Planinc and Milan Butina, and completed his master’s degree under Kiar Meško and Janez Bernik in 1981. Since he completed his studies, Matej has continually worked, exhibited, and participated in national and international exhibitions, art workshops, and symposiums. His artworks are kept in numerous collecti...
Episode #14: Mathematics

Episode #14: Mathematics

2022-11-2001:10:48

Why is it important to research mathematics? Do we discover maths, or do we invent it? What is the research purpose in the fields of topology and graphs? In which fields of mathematics does Slovenia have strong research groups? How does the research environment in Slovenia differ from other countries?In Episode 14, we talk with ASEF professors Bojan Mohar, Sara Kališnik, and Andrej Bauer. Listen as they discuss the field of mathematics.Bojan Mohar is a world-recognized mathematician in the fi...
In this episode, we host Ms. Ajša Vodnik, Msc., CEO of AmCham Slovenia and Vice President of AmChams in Europe. In this episode, we talk about her early career, her current role as CEO of AmCham Slovenia and Vice President of AmChams in Europe, lessons learned, and her vision for Slovenia. Among other things, we asked her how business ties can be strengthened between USA and Slovenia, what collaborations should be established between Slovenia and other countries across Europe, and in wh...
In this episode, we host Slovenian painter, lithographer, and graphic artist Leon Zakrajšek. Leon Zakrajšek graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in 1986. He specialized at the Centre Internacional de Recerca Gràfica, near Barcelona, and later as a Japanese government scholarship holder at Tama Art University in Tokyo. Between 1997 and 1998, he studied at the private printmaking studios of Hanga Kobo-Seya-Ku under Harumi Sonoyama and with master woodcutters Fumiu Kitaoka, Yukio Rei, and Sei...
Is the Metaverse a potential stepping stone for robotics and human-machine interaction? Does gamification enhance rehabilitation outcomes? Will we be able to build a comprehensive human-person digital twin for health purposes? How will Digital Twins and robotics change the manufacturing industry? What are the opportunities for Slovenia in this field? What is needed to build an ecosystem among industry and universities similar to the existing ones in the US? Can Slovenia become a test environm...
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