Keynote Speaker

Rolf T. Weberg


About the Keynote

Industrial Innovation and Mining

The purpose of this session is to highlight the importance of industrial innovation, including in the mining sector. What does innovation mean locally, nationally and internationally for promotion of sustainable production of minerals, both in the U.S. and globally?

An impressive slate of speakers will discuss their insight and perspective on:

  • U.S. and global minerals production, and the importance of the U.S. to maintain a major role in the minerals industry, both as a producer and as a technology leader.
  • What is required for Minnesota to continue to be a leading producer of minerals (e.g., iron ore, non-ferrous minerals, industrial minerals), and for other U.S. regions, the importance of developing and producing minerals domestically.
  • The role of the U.S. government in supporting innovation, particularly in research and development across industry, academia, and agencies.
  • What the minerals industry can do to increase the probability of opening mines in the U.S.

The session will include a Panel Discussion Emphasis will be placed on innovation, with respect to both technology and social responsibility, in developed and developing regions of the world. Topics will include:

  • Global innovation, and the need for dialog with “all stakeholders” for socially-responsive interaction with local and regional communities.
  • Environmental responsibility and industrial activities, including mining, in the 21st century
  • Joint U.S. government/industry funding of research and development in sustainable mining – as is now available in other countries – to ensure that the U.S. remains in the forefront of innovation and sustainable practice. What has been lost, and how can it be regained?
  • The decline of U.S. university mining engineering programs and its impact on innovation in mineral extraction technology, and recycling and substitution of materials.

About the Speaker

Experienced technology leader with strong leadership and communication skills; able to bridge between R&D, operations, marketing and end-use customers. Creative and effective in developing and delivering solutions to complex problems as either leader or member of cross-functional teams. Innovation leader; seeks to exploit new technology intersections to drive new materials & product development. Green Belt certified.

Specialties: Technology leadership, IP protection strategies, chemistry, formulation & product development, technical marketing development, polymer chemistry, coatings, composites, process development.