Wearable technology, the quantified self and the Internet of Things are all terms that are on everyone's tongues today, and the future is looking bright and promising. Within this context, the Olympic & Paralympic sports are benefiting greatly from the technology advances in the consumer market. Nevertheless, these sports do present unique and rare challenges that call for innovative and creative thinking. I will share with you insights into some of the projects that TEAM USA is working on in preparation for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games
Speaker Biography (Mounir Zok)
Mounir Zok joined the U.S. Olympic Committee as a Senior Sports Technologist in 2012. He is responsible for championing, setting up and running high-performance technology programs that increase the medaling chances of Team USA athletes at the future Olympic and Paralympic Games; such programs usually lie at the intersection of emerging technology and human-centered design to deliver the next generation of data-driven tools that Olympic and Paralympic programs can utilize.
In this role, he leads and manages a group of internal and external individuals (technologists, engineers, data scientists, hardware/software developers, designers, business partners) as well as work very closely with the US Olympic Committee's leadership to ensure alignment with organization policies and strategies. Given the innovative topics that he deals with on a daily basis, he is very firm in adopting lean & agile approaches that allow for iterating small-scale tests to validate all concepts at every point of development.
Prior to joining the USOC, Zok helped grow a sports technology start-up company in Italy into an internationally renowned firm in technology development. Specifically, he led and coordinated staff and assisted in developing businesses in foreign countries. Through innovative thinking and scientific knowledge, he managed the team behind developing various sports technology applications that are currently being used at a number of sports organizations in Italy.
Zok holds a PhD in Biomedical Engineering, speaks at major national and international conferences and meetings on technology and innovation, and is fluent in 4 languages. He currently lives with his wife and 2 children in Colorado Springs, USA.
Company Profile (United States Olympic Committee)
Founded in 1894 and headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., the United States Olympic Committee serves as both the National Olympic Committee and National Paralympic Committee for the United States. As such, the USOC is responsible for the training, entering and funding of U.S. teams for the Olympic, Paralympic, Youth Olympic, Pan American and Parapan American Games, while serving as a steward of the Olympic Movement throughout the country.
In addition to its international Games responsibilities and its work to advance the Olympic Movement, the USOC aids America's Olympic and Paralympic athletes through their National Governing Bodies, providing financial support and jointly working to develop customized, creative and impactful athlete-support and coaching education programs.
The USOC also supports U.S. Olympic and Paralympic athletes on and off the field of play through programming such as direct athlete funding, health insurance, tuition grants, media and marketing opportunities, career services and performance-based monetary rewards. In addition, the Olympic Training Center facilities provide athletes with performance services, including sports medicine; strength and conditioning; psychology, physiology and nutrition assistance; and performance technology.
Additionally, the USOC oversees the process by which U.S. cities bid to host the Olympic/Paralympic Games, the Youth Olympic Games or the Pan/Parapan American Games, while also playing a supporting role in the bid processes for hosting a myriad of other international competitions. Further, the USOC approves the U.S. trials sites and procedures for the Olympic, Paralympic, Youth Olympic, Pan American and Parapan American Games team selections.