Asian Brainstormers feast

Time Inc. Group Publisher Michael Federle said last night that the 2007 Fortune Global Forum will be held next year in New Delhi, India in late October. The announcement came at a private dinner in a room at Aspen's Matsuhisa restaurant. Federle joined Fortune International Editor Robert Friedman and Asian Bureau Chief Clay Chandler to welcome Brainstormers from across Asia. It was the first Asia-specific welcome in Brainstorm's history, and nobody will claim that there wasn't sufficient food and drink to mark the occasion. (Note to HQ: please add Nobu Matsuhisa to the 2008 Brainstorm invite list.)
Guest David Li, Director of the Center for China in the World Economy at the prestigious Tsinghua University, spent the previous night 'riding' an airport chaise following a missed connection. Possibly even less fortunate in that regard were a half dozen or so Japanese execs, including Airbus Japan CEO Glen Fukushima, who ran into their own connection troubles in Denver and thus were plodding into the mountains in a rented van as the rest sipped premium sake from tiny bamboo cups....
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Star-studded Fortune Brainstorm conference goes on the record
Fortune Brainstorm 2006 is underway, and it will be coming to you live right here through Friday afternoon. Fortune Brainstorm what, you say? Well, this is Fortune's every-other-year event wherein we, the Fortune editorial staff, get to invite 300 or so of the people we're most impressed by to come spend a week talking, eating, drinking, and hiking at the Aspen Institute. Think Sandra Day O'Connor, Lance Armstrong, and Chris DeWolfe (the founder of MySpace) -- and then throw in a few dozen Fortune 500 CEOs. Take our word for it: the list goes on. And on. We've got the President of MTV and the CEO of the Blackstone Group. Silicon Valley is in the house (Doerr, Gross, Khosla) as are biggies from China and India and some of the leading lights of the environmental movement. Get the picture? This week, at least, we've got the name dropping game in the bag. But, seriously, the point is not to preen, but rather to generate a few ideas that might be helpful to someone, somewhere -- hopefully to many people in many places.

The stated theme of the gathering is "connectivity," which is sufficiently broad to allow people to talk about pretty much anything, but narrow enough to get the conversation started. It also gives some of us an excuse (read: air cover) to blog the event. Even an old media shop like ours has figured out that we can't be talking about connectivity in this day and age without somehow digging up a blog. So we plan to bring you the most important and the juiciest of bits from the meetings, even as we bicker over exactly how "on the record" we should be. We certainly don't want the prospect of an over-active blog to put a chill on the open conversation that has been a trademark of past Brainstorms. Then again, if we see the Grand Mufti of Bosnia lunching with Shimon Peres and John McCain, well, we think the rest of the world might be interested. And we'd like to hear from you on the subject.

So, stay tuned: over the next 72 hours a handful of the Fortune editorial staff -- some old school print types, some new media junkies -- will be reporting live from Aspen via this page. We hope it will make for an interesting conversation.

Welcome to the Fortune Brainstorm 2006 Blog.
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A stunning day in Aspen

The energy is mounting in downtown Aspen as Brainstormers begin to trickle in to town.

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Less than two weeks and counting...
Brainstorm is a labor of love and we've been embracing it since long before Valentines' Day. This year we will be joined by Senator John McCain, Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Shimon Peres, former Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, President Tony Saca of El Salvador, novelist Bruce Sterling, Home Depot CEO Bob Nardelli, Dutch Islamic Feminist Ayaan Hirsi Ali, Madeleine Albright, McKesson CEO John Hammergren, Shell CEO Jeroen Van der Veer, blogger extraordinaire Arianna Huffington, MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe, and on and on. I get a kick just listing them.

The whole point is to get a conversation going about the problems and opportunities facing the world, with a clear focus on the centrality of business and technology. I hope people on this blog will chime in. We can use all the understanding we can get.
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