It’s hard to read very far these days without coming across the hot buzz phrase, “future of work.” For some, this phrase evokes interesting social, demographic, technological and economic policy considerations. For others, it evokes fear of a dystopian, robotized future where humans are subordinated or pushed out altogether.
It will come as no surprise that I am a technology optimist. I see technology as a positive force for change that will enable people to live happier, healthier, more independent, more productive, more fulfilling and longer lives. I think of the people we’ve lost for lack of a cure or access to treatment, or those whose injury or loss has resulted in new technologies or standards.
I see access to information as liberating. I think of the tens of thousands of lives that can be saved with automated vehicles rather than the handful that may be lost. I think of improved EMS and law enforcement capabilities, healthcare informatics, assistive technologies, genomics, scientific discoveries, clean energy, smart cities, and simply better consumer experiences. The list goes on and on.
I am appreciative of where I live and work. I know that there are only a few places on the planet with the innovation capacity to create the positive future I envision and that the greater Boston region is one of those places.
As the head of the region’s largest technology industry association, I and my team are in the trenches helping our members plug into our community and make important connections. We help provide the insights, thought leadership, best practices and visibility to make decisions and be visible in the market. And we work together as a community to do what we call ‘collective impact’ work – those things that you cannot do as a single company.
I believe everything that we do to help our members be more successful – from convening thought leaders, recognizing excellence, championing an issue, advocating for policies, mentoring the next generation, even sending a communication – helps this regional innovation ‘organism’ do more to tilt the future towards a more positive future.
In fact, the little things that any of us does to benefit our ecosystem helps make each of us more successful and brings the envisioned future a little bit sooner. Bringing a new drug, a safer vehicle, a cleaner power source, an assistive technology, or some other innovation just a year or two sooner can have a tremendous impact on the lives of people in Massachusetts and around the world.
So, each time my team sends an email blast, organizes an event, publishes an article, advocates for a policy, or otherwise helps a member, I know that they are playing an important role in helping create a better future for us and for millions around the world.
I am grateful for this opportunity and proud of the work of my team and the Massachusetts innovation economy.