Creating Generational Legacies

Friday, July 19, 2019

Breaking the cycle of poverty and inter-generational abuse

We had an amazing BBG Innovation session with Anne Marie Elias on “innovation - disrupt or be disrupted “ on Thursday.

Anne Marie’s passion is “social justice” and over the years helped  developed a social enterprise incubator at “New Horizons” called “unboxd”

New Horizons specialise in supporting people with disability, mental health concerns, those who are aged, people at risk of homelessness, humanitarian entrants, youth, and Indigenous Australians with advice connections and services. 

The discussion led to the pain of many indigenous communities around Australia and how we can help “break the cycle” of poverty and generational abuse.

A little bit of digging and research on linked in brought me to a post by Gayatri Agnew who shares the 5 qualities that make the world a “more high opportunity place” 

  1. good schools, 
  2. greater levels of social cohesion, 
  3. many two-parent families, 
  4. low levels of income inequality, 
  5. and little residential segregation, by either class or race. 

The list is suggestive, but hard to interpret he says. 

The post took me to a link by a fascinating fellow called Raj Chetty who has found that opportunity does not correlate with many traditional economic measures, such as employment or wage growth. 

It’s about “social capital” he says . 

“#socialcapital is about the set of connections that ease a person’s way through the world, providing support and inspiration and opening doors."

So who is this Raj Chetty ?

A fascinating story of how the “poverty cycle was broken” which has guided Cherry to his life’s work.

A man whose mum Anbu, came from a family of 5 siblings in the southern tip of India - Tamil Nadu, constrained by her poverty ridden community, where men would travel to earn a living for their stay at home mums and families. 

As she was finishing high school - a local tycoon in the village decided to open up a college in his house, to educate his children . 

Anbu attended, learned English , excelled, travelled to a nearby college every day by bus to learn Chemistry - starting her trajectory to medicine and become a Doctor.

“Why do you send her there? What use would a medical degree be to a stay-at-home mother?” Said her father 

In 1962, Anbu married Veerappa Chetty, a brilliant man from Tamil Nadu whose mother and grandmother had sometimes eaten less food so there would be more for him. 

Anbu became a doctor and supported her husband while he earned a doctorate in economics. By 1979, when Raj was born in New Delhi, his mother was a pediatrics professor and his father was an economics professor who had served as an adviser to Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.

Raj (the 9) and his family moved to the USA, topped his class, moved to Harvard, earned a doctorate in economics and at 28 was offered tenure. 

In 2012, he was awarded the MacArthur genius grant and a year later the John Bates Clark Medal, awarded to the most promising economist under 40. (He was 33 at the time.) 

In 2015, he launched  his own research and policy institute at Harvard “opportunity Insights” , with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.

Chetty now  40 is considered to be the most  influential social scientists of his generation. “The question with Raj,” says Harvard’s Edward Glaeser, one of the country’s leading urban economists, “is not if he will win a Nobel Prize, but when.”

Chetty’s work on breaking the poverty cycle 

Chetty’s work using big data and millions of data points - is about how one can break the cycle of poverty and “generational abuse” in America. 

Some insights (or “Chetty bombs” ) from his studies include 

  • Children born in 1940 had a 90 percent chance of earning more than their parents, but for children born four decades later, that chance had fallen to 50 percent - why? 
  • Chetty created a map of the USA  showing the people’s financial prospects depend on where they happen to grow up. 
  • In Salt Lake City, a person born to a family in the bottom fifth of household income had a 10.8% chance of reaching the top fifth. In Milwaukee, the odds were 5% 
  • Dozens of the nation’s elite colleges have more children of the 1 percent than from families in the bottom 60 percent of family income. 
  • A black boy born to a wealthy family is more than twice as likely to end up poor as a white boy from a wealthy family. 

The objective of the Institute is to break the “poverty cycle” - (and hopefully Australia and Africa can learn and benefit from this research).

Despite the  dismal  track record, Chetty is optimistic that social scientists can fix the problems they articulate in journals. 

“If a phenomenon like upward mobility can be measured with enough precision, then it can be understood; if it can be understood, then it can be manipulated. 

Chetty’s big-picture goal is to revive the American dream. 

I believe that this research will be far more pervasive than the USA - and be valuable to the planet Earth. 

Here’s the link that inspired this article

Sunday, July 7, 2019

Solar Energy Plant replacing gas, fossils and nuclear

The cheapest solar + battery-storage project in the world is being built on over 2500 acres at The Eland Solar Site in  the Barren Ridge renewables corridor in Kern County, USA 

Price of energy to be supplied at a fraction of gas and nuclear 

The plant is being built at half the estimated cost of power from a new natural gas plant, with the first megawatt planned to be released in April 2023 (being eligible for the 30pc tax credit) 

The LA Board of Water and Power Commissioners is expected to approve a 25-year contract that will serve 7 percent of the city's electricity demand at 1.997¢/kwh for solar energy and 1.3¢ for power from batteries.

The price is a fraction of the  4c/kWh of natural gas and 12c/kWh of Nuclear

This is expected to be the lowest solar-photovoltaic price in the United States and the largest and lowest-cost solar and high-capacity battery-storage project in the U.S. 

What the pundits say

Mark Z. Jacobson, the Stanford professor who developed roadmaps for transitioning 139 countries to 100 percent renewables, hailed the development on Twitter Friday, saying, "Goodnight #naturalgas, goodnight #coal, goodnight #nuclear."

The anti-nuclear activist Arnie Gunderson, who predicted storage prices under 2¢/kwh four years ago on the night Elon Musk unveiled the Tesla Powerpack, noted Saturday that his 2015 prediction was too high. He too said, "Goodbye coal, nukes, gas!"

Source - to read more

Friday, July 5, 2019

The 5G race seems to have been won by Huawei

International Business Strategies (IBS) Jones notes that the race to 5G technology has been already won by Huawei in China (with Ericsson as runner-up and Nokia a distant third). 

The ongoing tension between the United States and China is not helping the U.S. either to kickstart 5G domestically or take the lead in the global 5G race.

Asked for proof that China has won the still emerging 5G market, Jones told us that Huawei has already made more than 50,000 5G base station equipment sales to all the leading telecom operators in China and broadcasters. Early installations of 5G telecom equipment in the field are helping Huawei gain in-depth insights and learn lessons fast.

Most likely, global 5G market will be split in two — with China honing, advancing and creating its own 5G standards.

And the United States? “might have to license IP on 5G from China.”

So what is the issue?

The United States’ concerns on China range from issues of 

  • intellectual property thefts and China’s industrial policy to Huawei’s close relationship with Beijing and 
  • potential national security risks posed by Huawei’s next-generation 5G telecommunication infrastructure equipment. 
Or is it just a race for technological superiority?

China, meanwhile, is asking for the U.S. to treat Chinese companies fairly and show mutual respect.

It appears that the U.S. President is eager to use Huawei as a bargaining chip for short-term leverage and is trading away his administration’s original concerns over national security and IP thefts.

Source  — Junko Yoshida, Global Co-Editor-In-Chief, AspenCore Media, Chief International Correspondent, EE Times

Thursday, July 4, 2019

The Greatest Teacher of my life

Describe the parents dream in 2 words - 

Healthy child 

Danny Almog shares his story about his 2nd child - born autistic and retarded - he never made eye contact never said a word - but was the greatest professor of his life -

“ he has taught me about myself, society and others like him.” Says Danny.

This 1% of the population have 2 life sentences - locked in a broken body and put in an institution - how do you change this paradigm?

This TEDX talk makes me more hopeful of a future we can be proud of! 

Saturday, June 29, 2019

An ode to Oz

With a  population of entrepreneurs , small business owners, leaders, Ozzie battlers artists, Parents and Children - we punch above our weight - and have a voice with the superpowers.

We strive to be a people that collaborate NOT berate.

We cherish life and experiences AND learn from them.

We are not perfect, but I am proud to be Australian and am hopeful for our future.

We are a country  that has world class educational institutions and a VET system, with every Australian having an opportunity to upskill - with amazing humans  giving the time to educate, help and provide services and support to ALL.... no matter what your religion, race or bias.

We are a nation that the rest of the world aspires to visit - wanting “their” slice of the Ozzie  dream.

As a country we know that the future of technology and human convergence is coming, and we need to be at the forefront and ride that tidal wave. 

We need to master the digital realm and to do this we need to invest  time, resources, training and lifeblood into this realm. 

Onwards and upwards 

Thursday, June 27, 2019

AI in Agriculture is the bomb

Last week I was invited by Kevin Bloch of Cisco to an Agtech Forum which was really interesting. I then did a bit of research - 

Here are some of my takeouts 

It’s all about data 

It’s all about getting data and using that data to increase productivity - produce more for less .

How to Take subjective (gut feel) to objective (informed) decision making 

The future - livestock tags giving algorithms - the way the livestock moves - know where the animals are at any time - highlighting changes in their breathing? 

Parasites in sheep costs 436m pa is a case in point - merino sheep are born to die !!Good data has reduced loss by 25pc using sensor technology guving the farmer a heads up!

What happens when things go wrong -

Possums and birds destroying power supplies - equipment damaged - with IoT and data - it will be easy to fix or “swop it out”

“to have that level of control is magic”

Smart farming equipment manufacturers  are disrupting the $5T agriculture industry and agricultural giants - generating new revenue streams, and opening up new partnership opportunities. You can read the full report here by cb insights 

I was speaking to Richard Frawley (Ex Cisco and one of the smartest dudes I’ve met)  - and he was telling me that John Deere are providing harvesters that are already “self driving” via satellites and farmers are driving them from their laptops! If there is an issue - it will be identified by a satellite with an instruction to swop our a relevant part to fix it. 

Investment in AI in Agriculture is becoming extremely niche - with VC funding some interesting investments 

  • seed financing raised by a company using machine learning algorithms for “fishmeal inventory management.” 

We now even have
  • AI for Sex Education

  • Will the AI factory of the future look like this?

What are some of your ideas for commercialising Artificial Intelligence? 

Thanks to for the insights 

Diversity and Inclusion leads to Innovation and Growth - and Victoria is up there - leading the charge!

When it comes to Diversity, Inclusion  and Innovation - Melbourne is up there, and the Kelly Hutchison’s of the world are the drivers of this change - She is driving this change by leading the charge with the Victorian State Government initiative - “the Digital Innovation Festival “

Women Entrepreneur Cities Index listed the top 50 cities globally for women entrepreneurs and found Melbourne ranked 17th place for its ability to foster women entrepreneurship.

We are looking forward to adding value through our #bbglinkedinforum which we plan to launch on 10 July launch at RaceParty

Digital inclusion is one of the three themes of the annual Digital Innovation Festival.  #DIFvic actively encourages underrepresented voices and diverse stories from across the Victoria to be part of the festival. Read more about how our vibrant tech ecosystem is championing diversity. 

Diversity of ideas and people are at the heart of innovation. Including different voices and perspectives in the development process, can deliver surprising results. Diversity and inclusion are increasingly becoming differentiators in business as consumers become aware of who makes and manages the tech they use in their daily lives. Yet the tech sector that creates ground-breaking solutions does not always represent the society which uses them.

To fully realise technologies' transformative potential, everyone needs to be a part of shaping the digital economy. In order to create an inclusive tech ecosystem, organisations and individuals need to be engaged. At the macro level diversity means that all sectors have a seat at the table: business, entrepreneurs, not-for-profit and government. At the micro level individual groups need to be represented and collaborate to create positive change.  

Change is central to innovation and is essential to progress. The Victorian tech ecosystem is proactively addressing the issues of equity across a range of initiatives lead by LaunchVic, Victoria’s startup agency. Focusing on how we go about creating a diverse workforce and empowering underrepresented startup founders. They supported Change Catalyst to create a toolkit that offers best practices for making the tech industry more diverse and inclusive.

Encouraging allyship is another way to drive positive change. An ally is any person that actively promotes and aspires to advance the culture of inclusion through intentional, positive and conscious efforts that benefit people as a whole. According to Sheree Atcheson Award-winning Diversity and Inclusion Leader in her article in Forbes, everyone has the ability to be an ally as privilege is intersectional - white women can be actionable allies to people of colour, men can be allies to women, cis people can be allies to members of the LGBTQI+ community, able-bodied people can be allies to those with different abilities, economically privileged people can be allies to those who are not and so on.  

Gender in tech 

Diversity in the tech world has focused on gender, given the stats it’s not surprising. In Victoria, women are estimated to represent around 20 percent of the State's ICT industry and 30 percent of the workforce. Women continue to be underrepresented in ICT roles, significantly lower than in other professional occupations. Women comprised 28 percent of the national digital technology workforce; a figure that has remained unchanged since 2015 ACS: Australia’s Digital Pulse (2018)  

However, the 2017 Women Entrepreneur Cities Index listed the top 50 cities globally for women entrepreneurs and found Melbourne ranked 17th place for its ability to foster women entrepreneurship. Networks that support women in technology are thriving and the Melbourne chapter of the global Girls in Tech are back with their Catalyst Conference.

Geelong Youth Innovation Summit 2019 (Sat 11 May) and the girledworld WOW STEM Expo Summit 2019 program has been curated and designed just for Australian high school girls and early tertiary women, empowering, educating and equipping them to make informed decisions about their individual career pathways with the new World of Work front of mind.  

Supporting entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds 

LaunchVic is Victoria’s startup agency and is committed to the development of a globally-connected, diverse and inclusive startup ecosystem. Their third funding round supported programs that improved access and participation in the Victorian startup ecosystem for first-generation migrants and refugees. Another program supported entrepreneurial programs for Aboriginal Victorians, including Barayamal is the world’s first indigenous accelerator is looking for 5 innovative Indigenous startups to give a funding total of $50,000.  See a list of the organisations who are delivering real benefits on the ground.  

Migrants and refugees are important contributors to successful startup ecosystems. They are known to have high-risk appetites, having started a new life in a new country – often with no capital, no credit history, no assets, and no security. The risk-taking that defines a migrant’s experience often continues as they embark on entrepreneurial journeys to establish themselves. 

According to Startup Victoria diversity is the key to success and diverse leadership yields better business performance. Australia is one of the most ethnically diverse countries in the world, and our startups should be the same. Here in Victoria, we want to challenge the norm and lead by embracing diversity in our startups - starting from the top.  

Startup Victoria Pitch Night: Diversity and Inclusion on Tue 28 May will focus on diversity and showcase both leaders and up-and-coming startups that are led by Women, Migrant and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander from any industries. Startup Victoria are proud to partner with LaunchVic to showcase 4 diverse startups, as they pitch to a panel of hand-picked, expert judges as well as our usual community of founders, startups, investors and more. They will also be pitching to win the amazing Startup Victoria Prize Package.

Championing the underrepresented in the digital economy 

Melbourne is proudly home to the #TechDiversity awards which raise the profile of those who are building inclusion in the digital economy: to share their stories of courage and commitment, and to amplify their achievements, and to inspire others to act. 

#TechDiversity supports the increased participation of underrepresented groups and embraces women, people with a disability, people who recognize themselves as LGBTQI, Indigenous Australians and Torres Strait Islanders, people of colour, older people, and those who may face discrimination around their religious beliefs. 

The 2019 #TechDiversity Awards are open for nominations launching at RMIT on 15 May. Nominations display outstanding expressions of leadership, behavior, commitment, and courage – key touchstones that embrace inclusion and drive diversity.

2018 winners include Grad Girls a 1-year program run by Vic ICT for Women for female university STEM students to discover and understand the pathways available when taking the next step in their career. If you are raising awareness and creating change through diversity initiatives or programs nominate by 30 June. Who knows, we may see you in the spotlight at the #TechDiversity Awards Gala Dinner on 12 September. Save the date!  

#TechDiversity is a great example of collaboration in action. It is an initiative spearheaded by a core committee of volunteers representing Mia Consulting Services, Method9, Nexec Leaders and MizTee. This core committee is supported by a wider team representing a number of industry groups and businesses – including the Australian Computer Society (ACS), Australian Information Industry Association Victoria (AIIA), Vic ICT for Women and the Victorian Government.

Who's in the spotlight?  

Events are a great way to explore ideas, learn new skills and build networks to challenge the status quo. Many high-profile conferences, events and taskforces lack gender balance, despite there often being no shortage of qualified women. It is estimated less than 15% of panelists in Australia are women. Less than 12% of experts cited in business newspapers are women. Such optics have consequences. There has been push back against #manels, all male speaker panels. The Panel Pledge seeks gender balance at every forum and the tech sector is responding.

Change Catalyst has created a guide to inclusive events and recommends creating programming that speaks to your local community and is oriented towards the topics and conversations that will best serve your audience. Look outside your normal circles to find diverse voices and no matter what your event programming, be sure to provide guidance to your speakers, presenters and facilitators to ensure that your content is created with an inclusive lens.  

Walking the talk, TechInclusion returns to Melbourne this year convening the tech industry to focus on solutions to diversity and inclusion. The theme this year is “Voices of Innovation” – featuring diverse, underrepresented voices building the innovative technologies and cultures of our future. Presented by Change Catalyst and LaunchVic it's an open invitation to learning new solutions, meet diverse people who care, be stretched in a safe environment, and gain new tools and strength to advocate for change. A highlight will be the interactive session focusing on allyship in tech.

This year's program features some great speakers including: Dr Manisha Amin, CEO at Centre for Inclusive Design; Aiman Hamdouna, Founder & Ceo At Hatch Quarter Pty Ltd; Gian Wild, CEO, Founder at Accessibilityoz and Michelle Sheppard, Transgender Community Liaison Officer at Fitted for Work and more.   

If knowledge is power, then Melbourne Knowledge Week is your personal charger. MKW is packed full of interesting talks and events to help grow your mind and feed your curiosity. So make sure you check out what's on between 20 - 26 May around the city. 

DIF2019 Digital Inclusion program 

The DIF Team recommend all Event Partners read the Creating Inclusive Events Guide and consider how to make diversity and inclusion as part of how they approach their own DIF2019 event. All events are encouraged to make all efforts to achieve a gender-balanced program and consider other dimensions of age and international and local experience.  

The DIF Team actively seeks underrepresented voices and diverse stories from across the Victorian tech ecosystem. We work with event partners to identify speakers from diverse backgrounds and the DIF Hub program has an open EOI for speakers. If you’re interested to be a speaker please make sure you register or if have an event that focuses on diversity or inclusion sign up and post it to the DIFvic Online Events Hub.  

This year’s DIF Hub program will have dedicated Women Changing Tech Day and Digital Diversity Day to showcase the amazing people and solutions that are making a difference. Check out the program and spend some time outside of your comfort zone, open your mind to possibilities and step up and make a change for good.  

The DIFvic Online Events Hub digital inclusion events across the state from tech help and coding for kids in libraries, Meetup groups for female entrepreneurs and more are added weekly. You can sign up and create your account, for event alerts to receive a #DIFlist of digital inclusion events to your inbox.

Change Catalyst Reminder: Diversity and Inclusion is a journey, we’re all learning. It’s okay to make mistakes in the process. Listen and learn from the community and continue to improve. Congratulations on taking the first step!

About Kelly Hutchinson 

Kelly is a  self-confessed digital changemaker and ideas hacker. Results-oriented, she constantly envision ways to create shared value and see cross-sector collaboration as the key. 
As an international expert, Kelly harnesses  open innovation approaches to deliver positive change for business and communities. 

Teaching innovation and change management through practical case studies is how Kelly balances research and practice. 

She has ridden the entrepreneurship rollercoaster, working in her Melbourne-based family business and running two tech startups in Cambodia. Currently, Kelly works with the Victorian State Government delivering the Digital Innovation Festival which allows her to champion digital inclusion and emerging technology for the benefit of all.