Couldn’t attend SAS Global Forum 2016? Here are a few highlights, resources and thank-yous


Highlights from SAS Global Forum 2016SAS Global Forum 2016 recently concluded and by all measures it was a huge success. With more than 5,000 attendees, hundreds of crazy-good talks and countless networking and learning opportunities, it very likely was the best SAS users’ conference yet. To put a bow on this year’s event, and help those who were unable to attend enjoy some of the great content, I’ve put together a few highlights from SAS Global Forum 2016, with some helpful links, videos and several additional resources to explore.

Before we get started, though, I wanted to share a big thank you to all the volunteers who made SAS Global Forum 2016 possible. You don’t become the world’s largest analytics conference without substantial support from the user community and an outstanding roster of hard-working and dedicated volunteers.

This year, more than 450 users, led by conference chair Jenn Waller, volunteered countless hours of time and tons of energy to make SAS Global Forum such a success. Within this amazing group, we wanted to highlight the inaugural Global Forum Service Award recipients. These individuals were recognized for their dedication and commitment, not only to this year’s event, but for having served at least five years as a team lead or a section chair at SAS Global Forum. The award recipients are:

  • Maribeth Johnson – 12 years
  • Diana Suhr – 12 years
  • Nancy Brucken – 11 years
  • Pete Lund – 11 years
  • Sue Douglass – 9 years
  • Mary Anne DePesquo – 8 years
  • Christianna Williams – 8 years
  • Stephanie Thompson – 5 years

To learn more about the benefits of volunteering, read SAS Global Forum 2016 Chair Jenn Waller’s blog, Can you help? Volunteer opportunities aplenty at SAS Global Forum 2016. There are a number of opportunities for you to get involved in next year’s conference or one of SAS’ Regional User Group events this fall.

Now for the recap. Here are some highlights from SAS Global Forum and some helpful links and resources in case you weren’t able to attend.

Exciting announcements

The conference began with a bang. At Opening Session, Dr. Goodnight introduced several new offerings from SAS. Perhaps the most exciting was the announcement of SAS Viya, the next-generation high-performance analytics and visualization architecture from SAS. We also introduced other new products, including SAS Analytics for IoT and SAS Customer Intelligence 360.

Check out archived video of SAS Global Forum 2016 Opening Session.

Outstanding speakers

There were hundreds of top-notch session and keynote talks, but there were two in particular that really resonated with me.

The first was Arianna Huffington’s talk, Redefining Success: The Third Metric That Can Benefit Your Bottom Line. In her presentation, the co-founder, president and editor-in-chief of the Huffington Post Media Group, refuted the popular belief that in order to be successful we need to burn ourselves out. Instead, she challenged the audience to take care of themselves and their relationships and watch success follow.

Susan Cain’s keynote presentation was another one that hit the mark for me. The author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, Cain discussed how extroverts can dominate the workplace simply because of their predisposition to speak up, not because of their great ideas. (Yes, sometimes a problem I have!) She had some great advice for how introverts and extroverts could work together more effectively, resolve conflict and how to benefit from each other’s strengths.

View Huffington’s talk in its entirety
View Cain’s talk in its entirety
View other keynote and select breakout presentations on the SAS Video portal

Great networking

For attendees, SAS Global Forum offered a number of awesome opportunities to interact with and learn from other SAS professionals. SAS Global Forum was covered extensively on SAS Blogs (aggregated here), the SAS Support Communities, the SAS Twitter Account (hashtag #SASGF), SAS Users LinkedIn group, and the SAS Users Group Facebook page. But, building a broader network of SAS peers, doesn’t have to end with the conclusion of the event. Whether you attended the conference or not, connections with other SAS users can continue via social media. The channels mentioned above are great follows if you’re looking to get the latest scoop from SAS, start a conversation with your SAS peers, or share tips and tricks.

You might also want to check out this fun blog: Ten SAS Global Forum speakers to follow on Twitter. Now there’s an awesome network for you to follow!

Valuable papers

If you’re a SAS user, there’s nothing better than SAS Global Forum presentations. This year had a record number of presentations from users and SAS subject matter experts. Even if you attended the event, you only got a taste of all that great content. The good news: conference papers (and more) are available on the SAS Global Forum Proceedings webpage. Here you can view all papers or filter by topic, session type, skill level, job role, industry, or product. Heck, you can also download all proceedings if you’d like!

Extensive collection of archived video

During the event, SAS provided dozens of hours of live video streaming. Live coverage included Opening Session, all the keynote talks, select breakouts, Tech Talks, interviews with SAS executives and developers, and so much more. If you didn’t go to SAS Global Forum, or did but missed a few sessions, you can view some of the great content via SAS’ live stream archive.

So there you have it. A few highlights from SAS Global Forum 2016. If you attended SAS Global Forum this year, thank you. If you didn’t make it to Las Vegas, enjoy these resources and we hope you can join us next year in Orlando!


About Author

Larry LaRusso

Principal Communications Specialist at SAS

Larry LaRusso is the editor of the SAS Tech Report and SAS Learning Report newsletters and the SAS Users, Learning Post and Analytics U blogs. He has worked at SAS since 2000 in marketing, communications, customer experience and management roles for both the Education Division and External Communications. You can follow him on Twitter @lalaru102.


    • Larry LaRusso
      Larry LaRusso on

      Thanks Michelle. So much great content this year. I can spend a couple hours at a time on the video portal alone if I'm not careful. Looking forward to seeing you in Orlando!

Leave A Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Back to Top