Interviews

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    John Van Reenen: ‘A lot of promises are just smoke and mirrors’

John Van Reenen: ‘A lot of promises are just smoke and mirrors’

As director of LSE’s Centre for Economic Performance (CEP) up to 2016, British economist John Van Reenen led a team of academic researchers who produced detailed analysis of the consequences a divorce from the European Union would have on the UK economy. They predicted a fall in GDP, employment, direct investment, wages and productivity. Of these indicators, only employment […]

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    Bedy Yang: ‘Corporations often come from a place of fear of being disrupted’

Bedy Yang: ‘Corporations often come from a place of fear of being disrupted’

Companies that call themselves global do not always count on multicultural employees in their top leadership ranks. We cannot say that about 500 Startups, one of the most active venture capital firms in the world, whose San Francisco-based managing partner Bedy Yang was born of Chinese parents in Brazil and grew up in the town of Foz do Iguaçu, […]

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    Jeroen Tas: ‘If we don’t look at the big picture, we can tweak ourselves to oblivion’

Jeroen Tas: ‘If we don’t look at the big picture, we can tweak ourselves to oblivion’

When he bought large orders of light bulbs for the Winter Palace, the Russian Tsar became a high-profile customer of Philips, the Dutch multinational corporation founded in 1891 to produce just that: light bulbs. But the company never limited itself to one line of products. In the 20th century, Philips became a household name, with its brand name stamped on […]

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    Marcelo Lombardo: ‘Cloud management software is revolutionising small firms’

Marcelo Lombardo: ‘Cloud management software is revolutionising small firms’

Earlier this year, San Francisco-based venture capital firm Riverwood Capital invested US$ 20 million in Omie, a Brazilian start-up that provides small and medium businesses (SMBs) with an AI-powered business management software. Omie’s genius idea was to focus on small firms, not served by larger management software services. By automating business functions, the company essentially eliminates the massive amount […]

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    Marcus Weldon: ‘5G will enable a new era of productivity and economic growth’

Marcus Weldon: ‘5G will enable a new era of productivity and economic growth’

In the early aughts, Nokia produced the most coveted mobile phones in the world, before it was disrupted by big tech giants ushering in the age of smartphones. The Finnish multinational corporation no longer produces phones directly, as its core activity has shifted to network equipment. It now aims to lead the market for end-to-end 5G networks. With a […]

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    Sumit Jamuar: Indians are 20% of the world’s population, but represent only 1% of existing genetic data

Sumit Jamuar: Indians are 20% of the world’s population, but represent only 1% of existing genetic data

As the new frontier in medicine, genomics brings with it the hope of allowing researchers to find the cure for a number of largely incurable diseases, from cancer to Alzheimer’s, to infectious diseases and beyond. The challenge now is to map the DNA of as many ethnicities and nationalities as possible.  Currently, 81 per cent of the existing genetic […]

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    Alex Kong: ‘There are 1.6 million unbanked working adults in the UK’

Alex Kong: ‘There are 1.6 million unbanked working adults in the UK’

The use of new financial technology, or fintech, promises a number of benefits to consumers, including cost reduction and increased convenience in the way banking services are provided. Another, less often discussed, advantage is the possibility of financial inclusion. Alex Kong, founder and CEO of TNG, estimates that there are two million people around the world who do not […]

December 6th, 2017|Alex Kong, The Web Series|Comments Off on Alex Kong: ‘There are 1.6 million unbanked working adults in the UK’|
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    Mitchell Baker: ‘The internet was designed not to be owned by any one person’

Mitchell Baker: ‘The internet was designed not to be owned by any one person’

On 14 December the US Federal Communications Commission will vote on its chairman’s proposal to kill net neutrality, the principle on which the internet was built. Anyone can create a website, which can be seen at the same download speed as any other site. If the FCC’s chairman has it his way, the internet will look more like cable TV, in which […]

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    Adizah Tejani: ‘We need a mindset shift to understand the possibilities of open banking’

Adizah Tejani: ‘We need a mindset shift to understand the possibilities of open banking’

When the EU regulation known as the Payment Services Directive 2 (PSD2) takes effect, in January 2018, banks will be required to open their businesses to outside service providers. That includes offering these outsiders access to application programming interfaces (APIs), which are the digital protocols that allow third parties to build apps linking to a business. In the UK, […]

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    Crimson Rose: ‘Burning Man shows people a different way of looking at what they do’

Crimson Rose: ‘Burning Man shows people a different way of looking at what they do’

Every August, a pop-up city named Black Rock City is built in the middle of the desert in the US state of Nevada. During ten days, Black Rock receives a total influx of 70 thousand people, the maximum allowed by the authorities. They come for an event that is hard to describe, a mixture of art show, dance camp and […]

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    Vic Shao: ‘You’ll soon be able to have unlimited energy price packages for your home’

Vic Shao: ‘You’ll soon be able to have unlimited energy price packages for your home’

Back in August, when a solar eclipse darkened parts of the US for a couple of minutes during daytime, many power utilities had to put into action their prepared plans, switching from solar to natural gas-fired power and hydroelectric plants or importing energy from other states. The event highlighted a fact about energy: it is largely produced and consumed in […]

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    Hussam Hlaak: ‘Tech companies need to know who their clients are’

Hussam Hlaak: ‘Tech companies need to know who their clients are’

In its early days, the Arab Spring, the popular unrest that began in 2010 in the Middle East and North Africa, seemed to be evidence of the power of social media to bring about democracy. The illusion didn’t last very long. Governments learned quickly to use technology to suppress dissent. But social network platforms have been playing an important role […]

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    Julian David: ‘We need to get the data issue right in the Brexit negotiations’

Julian David: ‘We need to get the data issue right in the Brexit negotiations’

As businesses in all industries become increasingly digital, describing the technology sector as a separate category makes a little less sense. Banking, retail, the media and all kinds of services are going online. This digitalisation of economic activity poses a challenge to the idea of borders, and makes the Brexit negotiations especially difficult. Julian David, CEO of techUK, an association representing 950 […]

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    Amy Pressman: ‘The really disruptive companies are ingesting a tonne of data from customers’

Amy Pressman: ‘The really disruptive companies are ingesting a tonne of data from customers’

In the era when Amazon can deliver a product within two hours and social media and online review sites provide a megaphone for disaffected consumers, no manager can consider herself sane if she is not listening closely to the company’s customers. As co-founder and president of Medallia, a customer experience management (CEM) software provider, Amy Pressman knows first hand how important this […]

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    Gaurav Dhillon: ‘The cloud is safer than any other form of managing data applications’

Gaurav Dhillon: ‘The cloud is safer than any other form of managing data applications’

Software as a service, commonly know by its acronym SaaS, has become the lay of the land for large corporations. Instead of buying and installing software to manage information in different parts of the business, such as customer relationship management and billing, many now subscribe to software services hosted by third-party providers. For companies, this model of engaging with software has big […]

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    Joseph Kahn: ‘We’re not talking about news, we’re talking about fraud’

Joseph Kahn: ‘We’re not talking about news, we’re talking about fraud’

The upheaval in business, economics, politics and culture caused by the digital revolution has become a lot more clear now. One single event did more than most to bring that message home: last year’s surprising election results in the US. The repercussions were global. The news industry, in particular, was jolted when it became evident how widely political propaganda […]

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    Nico Sell: ‘Stop giving away all your information for free on Facebook’

Nico Sell: ‘Stop giving away all your information for free on Facebook’

Nico Sell is part of a rare breed of Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who don’t practice ‘tech evangelism’. The co-founder of the encrypted messaging app Wickr and the Wickr Foundation is a fierce critic of current business models based on mining consumers’ private information. In 2015 she wrote an open letter to the UK’s then Prime Minister, David Cameron, complaining about […]

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    Sasha Hoffman: ‘Autonomous cars are just one piece of a much larger equation’

Sasha Hoffman: ‘Autonomous cars are just one piece of a much larger equation’

Piaggio Fast Forward is the autonomous vehicle arm of the Piaggio Group, creator of the iconic Italian Vespa motorcycle. Even though PFF dreams of one day helping to move people, its focus now is on helping carry heavy packages for short distances, such as grocery bags from the store around the corner to your doorstep. ‘Autonomous cars are just […]

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    Marc DaCosta: “Define your problem, then look at the data, not the other way around”

Marc DaCosta: “Define your problem, then look at the data, not the other way around”

As co-founder and Chairman of Enigma, a firm specialising in collecting, integrating and analysing data, Marc DaCosta is not your typical technology entrepreneur. He began his career as an intellectual property strategy consultant to technology companies, but maintained close ties to academia, receiving a PhD in cultural anthropology from the University of California. Mark is also a fellow at […]

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    Robert Scoble: ‘The coming wave of technology will really change human life’

Robert Scoble: ‘The coming wave of technology will really change human life’

It’s hard to talk with Robert Scoble and not feel like you were left behind in a pre-historical era and have a lot of catching-up to do. He moves around with glasses for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). In his new book, The Fourth Transformation, he describes the glasses as the fourth user interface since the start of […]