Quick Navigate:

Industry Seminars

MIFF Industry Seminars

The MIFF Industry Seminars are back with a range of topics that are shaping the industry. Meet and learn from industry experts on what you need to know and ask the questions you want. This is another great opportunity to network and catch up with the professionals to build the right connections.

All seminars will take place at The Gallery, Level 1A, MITEC.

Coming Soon! The list of seminars at MIFF 2024 will be released at a later date. The list below are industry seminars that were held during MIFF 2023.

The Furniture Design Trend in the Post Pandemic Era

  • 2 March 2023 • 11:00am - 11.45am (Forum)
  • Various (see below)

Synopsis: What are the furniture design trends in the post pandemic future? How has market demand changed and are furniture makers ready to adapt?

Dr Eric LeongChief Judge of MIFF FDC 2023, Malaysia
Malaysia's most celebrated art & design educator and designers - Dr. Eric Leong also known as DREL. With more than 30 years practising in the design industry and with a number popular home makeover series and lifestyle radio shows aired on Malaysian television & radio has left DREL crowned as the "King of Design" of Malaysia. DREL is also the regular judge for many local and international design competitions, he has been involved in MIFF design competitions for more than two decades

Tul LekutaiPrincipal & Co-Founder, Deco Moda Studio, Thailand
Tul Lekutai is graduate in architecture from Chiangmai University and is involved in diverse creative fields Founded Deco Moda Studio in 2003 and in 2017, he established Thailand visual practitioners spearhead team called Pictures Talk. He is currently a board member of International forum of Visual Practitioners, USA.

Walter TanManaging Director, Elemental Republic, Malaysia
Walter Tan is an industry veteran with 26 years of experience. He designs and develops a variety of furniture for markets all over the world. Elemental Republic is a wooden furniture manufacturer in China. Walter is also a furniture design consultant for a Sydney-based company. Mentor to a group of young designers called “Pattern Banyak” for the Millennials@Design showcase in MIFF in 2018, 2019 and 2020.

Hamidah AbdullahTimber Specialist, Malaysia
Hamidah Abdullah is a timber specialist. For over 30 years, she had valuable knowledge and experiences turning timber into valuable products. She capitalised on industry and marketplace trends to strategise solutions and enhance timber business operations and market access. She represented Malaysia and timber industry in communicating strategic plans to ensure the sustainability of the timber industry without sacrificing the beautiful Malaysian forest.

ESG (Environment, Social and Governance): Will it Transform the Malaysian Furniture Industry?

  • 2 March 2023 • 11:45am - 12:30pm
  • Professor Dr Jegatheswaran Ratnasingam, Universiti Putra Malaysia

Synopsis: ESG is gaining attention and importance globally across industries. This presentation highlights the wood products and furniture sector, provides empirical data on the present status of ESG compliance and challenges faced by the industry players. It provides valuable information for manufacturers, buyers and policymakers. It is the first such study on the wood products industry in the country as part of a long-term research project by the team of researchers led by Professor Dr. Jegatheswaran at the Faculty of Forestry & Environment, Universiti Putra Malaysia.

Professor Jegatheswaran Ratnasingam, Ph.D. is a member of the Faculty of Forestry & Environment at Universiti Putra Malaysia. He was in the Asian furniture manufacturing industry, holding positions at various capacities for more than a decade, before venturing into academia. He also regularly consults for manufacturers, regional development agencies, in both technical and policy matters. An established researcher with almost 250 publications to his credit, he is also a regular speaker at seminars and conferences. He is also a recipient of three Honorary Professorships, from leading Forestry universities in the United Kingdom, Germany, and South Africa, for his outstanding work on furniture industry’s sustainability and value-creation. He presently leads a large internationally-funded research project on ‘ESG and Circular Economy for the Wood Products Industry’. He strongly believes that ‘learning is a life-long journey, and it starts with sharing information’.

The Future of Sustainability in the Global Furniture Industry

  • 2 March 2023 • 2:00pm - 2:45pm (Panel Discussion)
  • Various (see below)

Synopsis: As policy makers move towards sustainability and ESG regulations, get to know current trends and the outlook of sustainability in the global furniture industry. How can the furniture industry prepare itself for the sustainability agenda and long-term value?

Lim Bo QiangxOrdinary, Malaysia • (Panelist)
Bo Qiang (Bo) is the curator of xOrdinary, a creative resource sharing platform with a collective of designers, artists & creative entrepreneurs. Bo with an interior architecture trained background, is actively involved in the furniture industry for the past 10 years. As the past year winner of MIFF Furniture Design Competition, he continues to work on the research & creative solution for the industry with MIFF initiative & support in nurturing the Malaysian local furniture design creative scene.

Puan Sabrina MawasiDeputy CEO, MTCC, Malaysia • (Panelist)
(bio & photo will be furnished soon)

Harith Green CarpenterThe Green Factory, Malaysia • (Panelist)
(bio & photo will be furnished soon)

Michelle LeeFuller Academy, Malaysia • (Panelist)
Michelle is the co-founder and COO of Fuller Academy, an online learning platform focused on providing high quality business sustainability education. She is passionate in making sustainability education affordable, accessible, and relevant for businesses, providing the skills and knowledge to complement their sustainability journey. Over the last decade, she has worked with impactful startups, international organisations championing the SDGs, and also founded impact enterprises working with vulnerable communities.

Product Certification Schemes by FRIM

  • 2 March 2023 • 3:00pm - 3:45pm
  • Dr Sharmiza Adnan, FRIM PCS, Malaysia

Synopsis: Find out more about the product certification services (PCS) offered by the renowned Forest Research Institute Malaysia (FRIM) and the benefits to manufacturers and traders. Among the goals of FRIM PCS are to help local industries to produce quality products consistently and assist the wood-based furniture industry meet the standards of local and international markets.

Dr. Sharmiza Adnan obtained a Bachelor of Engineering (Chemical) from Vanderbilt University, USA in 1997, Masters of Science (Chemical and Process Engineering) from UKM (2006) and Ph.D (Chemical Engineering) from Monash University, Australia (2012). She also holds an Australian Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.

She joined FRIM in 1997 as a Research Officer and was responsible in developing the Quality Management System and ISO/IEC 17025 laboratory accreditation for the Pulp and Paper Laboratory since 1998. Her R&D interest includes cellulose based product development, membrane distillation, product certification and product testing. She was also responsible in developing the Proficiency Testing Programme for paper products in Malaysia participated by paper testing laboratories from all over the country since 1998.

Dr. Sharmiza was the Head of Pulp and Paper Laboratory FRIM from 2015-2019, the Head of Quality Management Unit from 2018-2019 and the Managing Director of FRIM Product Certification Services since 2020.

Throughout more than 25 years of career, Dr. Sharmiza has been involved in more than 50 research and consultancy projects, co-authored more than 70 publications and involved in more than 40 human capacity building programmes. She is also involved in various technical committees in standard development. During her time in Australia Dr. Sharmiza worked closely with CSIRO Materials Science and Engineering, Australia Pulp and Paper Institute (APPI), Monash University and Pearson Research and Assessment, Australia.

NEWH Design Panel: The Future of Hospitality Interiors

  • 3 March 2020 • 11:00am - 11:45am (Panel Discussion)
  • Various (see below)

Synopsis: Hear from members of NEWH, the international network of the hospitality industry, on what is coming next in the industry. How do hospitality professionals see the future of the industry, with a special focus on interior design, furniture and materials? How human's need of being deeply connected with nature is changing the hospitality industry?

Chris TuckerPrincipal, Tucker & Associates, Canada • (Moderator)
With over 35 years of experience in the Design Industry beginning her career path at Fanshawe College in Interior Design to evolving to the supply side of the industry. The years of experience have evolved by working closely with Procurement, Property Owners, Designers and Architects to meet the client and project specifications in product, price and service. Tucker and her associates enjoy the relationships that have been established throughout these years by providing excellent service in a market that is constantly changing.

Teri UrovskyVP Interior Design, Spaciel, USA • (Panelist)
Teri was most recently the Vice President of Design and Project Management for Marriott International. Her Marriott career spanned 35 years where her design leadership touched on all segment brands ranging from Fairfield Inn to Marriott to The Ritz-Carlton tier of hotels. She collaborated across Marriott Brand teams, Operations and Ownership groups to create design strategies that define the customer experience while staying focused on brand delineation and ROI for the owner.

Tara ChungDirector, Global Design l US & Canada – Marriott International, USA • (Panelist)
Tara joined Marriott International in 2006 and has over 26 years in the Hospitality Industry. She is currently the Director of Design for Marriott International in the Design and Project Management Team for the Premium Classic Brands consisting of Marriott Hotels, Sheraton Hotels, Delta Hotels, & Gaylord Hotels. In her role she is the Brand Champion for Delta Hotels and oversees interior architecture and design for new builds, conversion, and renovation projects in the United States and Canada region.

Lorna Meva RazaDirector, Wells International, France • (Panelist)
Lorna is an internationally experienced Director of Wells International and Project Manager based in Paris. Her key skills are leading teams and managing design staff, together with client management and overall communication, which has allowed her to work globally, between North America, Europe and the Middle East. As a graduate of architecture and a designer, Lorna’s specialty is in luxury hospitality with an enviable portfolio of completed projects. She’s resourceful, a critical thinker and approaches each project in a methodical manner which allows the design teams to flourish unencumbered in their creative process.

Enrico G. ClevaOwner, ec&co. | architects, Italy • (Panelist)
Enrico is an Italian architect, interior designer and international business development consultant in the design and exhibition businesses. A graduate of Politecnico di Milano University, Enrico founded his practice in 2005 with his wife architect Sara Viarengo Cleva, focused mainly on interiors for corporate offices, high end residential and hospitality projects. Enrico is official representative of Fiera Milano in Canada, working on business development of global shows like Host Milano, Tuttofood and HOMI. He is a strategic consultant for the Interior Designers of Canada association, a regular speaker on interior design trends and writes for design magazines such as Canadian Interiors.

After the Pandemic: What Future for Trade Fairs?

  • 3 March 2023 • 11:45am - 12:30pm
  • Roberta Mutti, Independent Journalist and Consultant, Italy

Synopsis: The first physical trade shows after the pandemic, confirmed that the public has retained interest in physical fairs, especially in the furniture and design sector. Indeed, the contemporary trade fair is no longer just a market exhibition. Find out what visitors expect and what is the key to the business of the new millennium.

Roberta is an architect and professional journalist. For over 30 years, she has been collaborating with the world's leading furniture and design magazines. As a consultant, she has worked on furniture industry implementing projects, working with government bodies and para-government associations, in Malaysia and Singapore. For about 20 years, she has been working with Federmobili, the Federation of Italian Furniture Retailers.

In recent years, she also works with different firms in the furniture and design industry, as a digital marketing consultant, and specializes in online journalism.
She’s the author of the book “Storia del Fuorisalone - History of Milan Design Week”, the first book on the history of Milan Design Week, edited by DDN-Design Diffusion World.