I feel very fortunate to be among the 400 people invited to attend Google’s Zeitgeist 11. So many great talks and genuinely inspiring ideas. Here are a few of my favorites.
The brilliant Robert Reich on us and them. He talks about why we can’t (or won’t) solve unemployment or address poverty among families with children. Reason? Us and them. They are not one of us. They are not in our community of concern. They are not people with whom we share interdependency. Too bad he’s not running the country.
You may never have heard of Jean-Philippe Vergne, Professor, R. Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario. But he will give you an entirely new perspective on the value of inviting your users, customers, community into the creation of your brand and company. He argues that pirates and hackers actually make things better. Those in control not so much.
And finally, this young dude, Adam Braun. It’s not so much that he took up a cause, though he did. Or that he built 40 schools around the world, though he did. Rather it’s the idea that he has re-defined not-for-profit, labeling it “for-purpose,” and applying for profit principles and practices to Pencils of Promise.
There were many other great speakers and endless conversations about possibilities. You can find more of them on the Zeitgeist YouTube page. If you want to be totally blown away, watch some of the young minds talk about what they’re up to. You’ll either think you wasted your youth entirely, or that you better get on your kids’ asses real soon. If you’re a news junkie, check out Koppel and Ariana going at it(gently but still) in this panel conducted by New Yorker editor Nicholas Thompson.
Thanks to Google for sharing all of this content with those of us who attended and the many more who didn’t. Watch. Learn. Be inspired.