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Tech4Society - February 2010 - Final Report

Tech4Society - February 2010 - Final Report

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Invention and technology are critical to development. Yet at this moment in human history, a time when the technology revolution seems to be at its peak, we seem to be no closer to solving big social problems than ever. Indeed, with the world changing at a logarithmic scale, even the most rapidly advancing technologies seem hard-pressed to keep up. As Ravi Venkatesen, Chairman Microsoft, India, said:

“Why do these solutions which seem so full of potential so seldom live up to their potential?”

Tech4Society, a three-day convening of 76 Ashoka-Lemelson Fellows with hundreds of thought leaders, engineers, philanthropists, venture capitalists, and business leaders in Hyderabad, India, at once posed the question and proposed a solution. The essence of invention, participants agreed, must change – and is changing. It is far less likely to occur in anonymous garages, a function of individual brilliance, persistence, and luck. Instead, truly world-changing invention today is linked inextricably to entrepreneurship. The goal of Tech4Society was to dramatically narrow the gap between technological potential and realization – by learning how to build systems that maximize the social impact of technological innovation, and that continually cultivate the next generation of inventor-entrepreneurs forging change around the world.
Invention and technology are critical to development. Yet at this moment in human history, a time when the technology revolution seems to be at its peak, we seem to be no closer to solving big social problems than ever. Indeed, with the world changing at a logarithmic scale, even the most rapidly advancing technologies seem hard-pressed to keep up. As Ravi Venkatesen, Chairman Microsoft, India, said:

“Why do these solutions which seem so full of potential so seldom live up to their potential?”

Tech4Society, a three-day convening of 76 Ashoka-Lemelson Fellows with hundreds of thought leaders, engineers, philanthropists, venture capitalists, and business leaders in Hyderabad, India, at once posed the question and proposed a solution. The essence of invention, participants agreed, must change – and is changing. It is far less likely to occur in anonymous garages, a function of individual brilliance, persistence, and luck. Instead, truly world-changing invention today is linked inextricably to entrepreneurship. The goal of Tech4Society was to dramatically narrow the gap between technological potential and realization – by learning how to build systems that maximize the social impact of technological innovation, and that continually cultivate the next generation of inventor-entrepreneurs forging change around the world.

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Published by: Ashoka: Innovators for the Public on May 06, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial No-derivs

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10/26/2010

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