Dr. Umar Saif has extensive experience in academia, management, consulting and entrepreneurship in the IT sector. Dr. Saif received his academic training from LUMS, Cambridge and MIT. He did his BSc (Hons) from LUMS (1998), PhD from University of Cambridge (2001) and Post-Doctorate from MIT (2002). Dr. Saif has received Executive Education from the Harvard Kennedy School on Global leadership and public policy in 2013. In 2013,
Dr. Saif was appointed the founding Vice-Chancellor of the Information Technology University (ITU), Punjab, where he is responsible for establishing a new publicly chartered university with programs in Computer Science and Electrical Engineering. Dr. Saif has received numerous awards for his work. He was awarded Sitara-i-Imtiaz (SI), one of the highest civil awards by Government of Pakistan, in 2014 in recognition of his services to Pakistan. Recently,
Dr. Saif has worked as Chairman of the Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB), heading all public-sector IT projects in the Government of Punjab since Nov 2011. During his tenure as Chairman of the Punjab IT Board, Dr. Saif launched several initiatives aimed at improving citizen services for police, high-court, city district government, health and education, especially using smartphones. He led the development of Punjab Innovation Policy in collaboration with Google and launched Plan-9, Pakistan’s first and largest public-sector startup incubator. He is largely credited with revamping the intermediate and matric exam system in Punjab, after a complete debacle of the exam system in the previous year. Under his leadership, PITB designed the smartphone-based early epidemic warning system that played a central role in fighting the Dengue epidemic in Punjab in 2012, and rolled out an innovative citizen feedback model for fighting corruption using technology.