IEEE 7th World Forum on Internet of Things
14 June-31 July 2021 // New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

TOP2: Communications and Networking


The world is getting “smarter”.  Though we are social distancing, we are growing more and more (digitally) connected.  As we grow from smart, connected devices, to smart, connected building…to smart, connected enterprises (business, healthcare, etc.) …to smart, connected cities…to smart, connected (power) grids…and so on, we can begin to understand the impact of Internet of Things (IoT), including embedded computing, connectivity and networking on our daily lives.  The truth of the matter is that we are surrounded by IoT every day.  In our homes, on our jobs (which may be from our homes), on the manufacturing floor (a.k.a. Industrial IoT or IIoT), or in an enterprise, stadium, airport and (almost) any other public venue, we use these intelligent devices/mediums to produce, send, receive, analyze, and make decisions.    IoT is everywhere. And while many like to look at the annual market reports, touting tens of billions of connected devices by 2023, the rest of us are looking at either how do we successfully implement IoT in our brownfield (where we want to retro-fit our current processes and equipment with some type of “IoT magic gadget” that will propel us forward to Industry 4.0), or how do we start in a greenfield? [1]

Whether you are collecting, processing, storing or analyzing data at the process-level, edge, on premise or in the public or private fog/cloud, your IoT implementation will rely on fast, efficient, secure and reliable connectivity and networking. It is imperative that we envelop new applications with such capabilities.  Equally imperative is the need to ensure that the connectivity and network required for these applications are engineered and optimized for the purpose.  This track will bring together global experts from industry, government and academia to discuss these topics in an effort to help move our world forward in its successful understanding and implementation of IoT. Through orchestration, IoTs can be easily integrated with existing business workflows and systems, perform distributed learning and unify data from different IoT devices and systems.

To discuss those and many other relevant topics, we bring together experts from a broad range of different environments and application settings to encompass different IoT verticals and topicals areas.  Thus, topics this track will cover will include:

  • Licensed and Unlicensed Spectrum: standards and regulations
  • IoT role in5G and beyond: technology, public/private networks, applications, deployments
  • IoT look at Wi-Fi6 & Wi-Fi7
  • Bluetooth, 802.15.4/ZigBee, LoRA, NB-IoT, MQTT and other narrow-band protocols for LPWAN networks
  • Connect & Compute in IoT, where it is: Edge-Fog-Cloud or all above?
  • Heterogeneity in IoT: CPUs, GPUs, FPGAs and custom processors optimized for IoT applications
  • Security, privacy and trust challenges in IoT
  • Distributed timing and synchronization with TSN, IEE-1588, WR and other PTP protocols in IoT applications: leveraging ultra-low latency/high reliability networks
  • AI-ML enabled IoTs, networking and communications, distributed and federated learning
  • IoT network orchestration: challenges and opportunities
  • Greening of IoT: energy efficiency and power consumption in IoT devices and networks
  • Hot topics (panel discussions)
    • 5G and Wi-Fi -friends or foes in the enterprises IoT
    • Wireless all the way – future of wired & optical networks in IoT applications
    • Rise of AI – Hard logic or AI for missing critical IoT applications
    • Co-existence – the major trend in IoT (comm, application and deployment)


Track Co-Chairs

Karen Matthews

Karen Matthews, a native of Baltimore, MD, began her academic career at the US Naval Academy, received a BS in Electrical Engineering from Morgan State University and a MEng and PhD in Electrical Engineering and an MBA, all from Cornell University.

Karen is the Founder and CEO of Purpose Driven Consulting (PDC). Prior to PDC, she held senior positions in Corning Incorporated’s Science & Technology Division in opto-electronic packaging as a research and then senior research scientist, most recently working in early innovation stage markets and technologies for the optical communications sector to identify and help implement new growth opportunities in both wired (fiber, cable and connectivity) and wireless. Her focus on moving concepts through to commercialization remains, with a current emphasis on Digital Transformation, 5G, the Internet of Things and Industry 4.0 Innovation.

Dr. Matthews has authored numerous publications and patents and is a member of several technical and professional organizations. She has served as an Executive Board member of Georgia Tech’s Center for the Development and Application of Internet of Things Technologies (CDAIT) – sitting on the Research Work Group and leading the Thought Leadership Work Group therein. Most recently, she has been invited as keynote speaker, moderator, panelist and open forum discussion leader at various 5G, Internet of Things and smart manufacturing conferences. She has Chaired the OFC 2020 N5 Market Watch, developing the programming for Market Watch, Network Operators Summit and Data Center Summit, and continues as an active subcommittee member for 2021 as well as co-chair of the 2021 IEEE World Forum track on Communications and Networking. She is an Executive Board member of The Upskill Foundation, a non-profit focusing on upskilling underrepresented groups in data science.

Mikhail Galeev, Intel



Igor Alvarado, NI

Igor Alvarado is an Account Manager for R&D and National Laboratories at National Instruments ( where he helps to develop collaborations and strategic partnerships with National Laboratories, not-for-profit R&D Centers and leading Research Universities in the U.S. in such areas as Cyber-Physical Systems, Smart Energy Systems, Medical Imaging/Devices and RF/Wireless Communications to improve engineering education, advance scientific research and accelerate innovation with support from NSF, DoD, DoE, NIH and other funding agencies.  Mr. Alvarado holds A.S. and B.S. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Kansas State University and has been with NI since 1999. He is an NSF Innovation-Corps mentor and has more than 30 years of practical experience in successfully developing and growing markets for high-technology products and services in the U.S. and Latin America. He has led the design, development and deployment of real-time, measurement and intelligent control systems that involve advanced numerical methods and algorithms using high-performance embedded computing platforms. He is an active member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), the Society of Industrial and Applied Mathematics (SIAM), the International Society of Automation (ISA), the American Physical Society (APS), the American Society of Mechanical Engineering (ASME), the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the National Organization of Research Development Professionals (NORDP). Mr. Alvarado has published several technical papers and has taught courses to engineers and scientists on instrumentation, control and automation applications in industry and academia; he has also been an invited keynote speaker at leading at national/international meetings, and has served as a consultant and advisory board member for academic institutions, corporations and research laboratories. In 2017, Mr. Alvarado received the prestigious Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Heads Association’s (ECEDHA) Industry Award for his contributions to the ECE discipline and to engineering education.



Tim O’Shea, DeepSig Inc., USA

Tim is the Co-Founder/CTO of DeepSig, a venture backed startup in Arlington, VA which focuses on building production machine learning driven wireless software for wireless sensing and communications systems, with a focus on optimizing 5G vRAN and OpenRAN deployments and pioneering 6G RAN candidate technologies.  He also serves as a research assistant professor at Virginia Tech.  He previously worked as a DOD civilian focused on applied research in software and cognitive radio technologies and rapid prototyping, has helped build and lead the GNU Radio project, is  the Co-Chair of the IEEE Emerging Technology Area on Machine Learning for Communications, has Chaired the GNU Radio Conference Technical Proceedings, MLC Workshops at IEEE Globecom and ICC, and is the Co-author of over 50 peer reviewed conference and journal papers and patents focusing on the intersection of wireless communications and machine learning.  Previously he worked with Hawkeye 360, Federated Wireless, and Cisco Systems, has served as a technical advisory board member for programs at NSF, DARPA, EU HORIZON 2020, and other DOD programs. He completed his PhD from VT in 2017 and his BS/MS at NC State in 2007.