by Jonathan Van
Since when did university become places to churn out mindless working drones for BFC’s (Big F**kin’ companies)? The verticals that have been built in universities that are based on profession have completely deviated from the humanities, which teach skills transferable to any job. Unfortunately, students, like me, have been put through a system that encourages herd behavior instead of a culture of innovation and leadership. We have been so closed from each other that we rarely get to work with people of different skillsets until we hit the “real” world. I believe projects should be cross-disciplinary. Perhaps, a business major teams up with a computer science major and an advertising major to create the next best IPhone app that you’ll be Tweeting about tomorrow. Maybe a fashion designer joins an architect to build an art museum with inspiration from the history of fashion. There’s no end to the combination of creativity that can occur when diverse minds come to bear. It’s the system itself that has given students a hard time finding the expertise they need for competent cofounders. Schools like Babson have turned initiatives into full blown colleges where every student has their own venture; a trial by fire. Now finding mentors is even harder. The city is the “real” world and has an ecosystem of its own, but it doesn’t have to be that way. There are millions of interactions made possible by an open accessible campus and city that allows students to get out of its “bubble”. Imagine a platform that could bridge the gap from capitalism 1.0 into capitalism 2.0, where resources are distributed and democratic. I dream of a world that doesn’t stand for stop-gap solutions, but gets to the heart of the problem and proposes many solutions, and allowing anyone to learn how to create wealth. No longer a world where you are born at the top, but where anyone can share their idea, find a team, execute, and prosper. There will be less for-profit focus and more for-benefit focus. So far there are many scattered solutions springing up: Startup America Partnership, Angel List, Y Combinator, but what will horizontally integrate them all to make one hub for easy collaboration and action?
Mark Briggs signs his books ‘Journalism 2.0’ and ‘Entrepreneurial Journalism’ at the SXSW bookstore.
by Jessica Mah
Entrepreneurs are throwing their money at solutions to the wrong problems -- they aren't using metrics to drive what really matters to their strategy. I'll talk about how inDinero has wasted a huge chunk of its investors money, chasing the wrong problems, building features that we thought had value but actually had negligible impact, among other things the company should have done differently.
by Jonathan Cain
Why are some of the brightest, most passionate and innovative young people in America dropping out of college? 20u.org, a web-based film series, follows the personal journeys of four brilliant young entrepreneurs through the course of the inaugural Thiel Fellowship.
Through a visually stunning mosaic of over a dozen short films shot over the course of two years, we meet the young and awe-inspiring Laura Deming, Alex Kiselev, Sujay Tyle and Chris Rueth as they leave their universities and homes to embark on unique and ambitious entrepreneurial ventures, with guidance and mentorship from Silicon Valley’s brightest and most successful entrepreneurs.
20u.org – an interactive documentary with episodic updates — showcases the experiences of each of these young innovators in three parts: entering the Thiel Fellowship; the Fellowship in full swing; and at the Fellowship’s completion, as they carry their incredibly valuable new knowledge and experience into the future.
by Boris Revsin
Social actions is the future of engagement marketing. Looking through the lens of the classic college drop-out turned entrepreneur, we will explore how user experience and game dynamics can generate remarkable action around real-world memes. As disruptive forms of marketing begin to fall away more and more brands turn to marketing as interactive content. Find out how the next wave of advertising isn't really advertising at all.
9th–13th March 2012