Day 1 – The Diary of A Futurist’s Trade Mission Journey through Silicon Valley Israel

25 Australian business women and men have joined together to spend an immersive week in Start Up Nation Israel, in search of transferable innovation lessons that we can take back to our own businesses and communities.

On paper, Israel seems an unlikely place to find and study innovation. It’s a country of only 8.85 million people that officially came into existence 70 years ago (1948), but in terms of global innovation punches way above its weights.

Our first stop was at Australia’s Launching Pad Tel Aviv, 1 of 5 global offices the Australian Government has set up to provide Australians’ with quick and ready insights, networks’, contacts and access into growth regions.

Omri Wislizki, Tel Aviv’s Launch Pad’s CEO, introduced us to the notion of “start as fast as you can and slowly go faster” a cultural innovation mantra that seems to dominate the thinking of all local start-ups.

He took us on an exploration of the psyche of the Israeli entrepreneur, born in a country of conflict that is uncertain of its tomorrow and has had to, from day 1, innovate to provide food, water and safety for its ever-growing population.

He argued that this sense of urgency is born into every child, is honed at school and forged in compulsory army service.

This trilogy of formative year influences, stamps citizens with a sense of urgency, a belief that every person can and does make a difference and that that difference has to happen right now, because nobody’s sure about what tomorrow may bring.

Omri then took us through the 90-day program he offers to Australian businesses, the vast networks he is able to tap in to and the incredible outcomes and inroads Australian start-ups have already achieved in the short time the launch pad has been in existence.

We then travelled on to visit We Work (rumoured to be the next multi-billion-dollar Israeli unicorn tech company to sell) and Microsoft’s Scale Up centre to hear of the work they are doing in this region and the programs they offer.

Microsoft has a huge R&D department in Israel and also runs a 4 month Scale Up program working with start-up assisting them to hone, market and capitalise their innovations using the various Microsoft cloud-based programs.

We then travelled on to hear the most incredible briefing from Deloitte’s Lior Weizman, who in 60 minutes comprehensively told the story of Israel’s innovation sector, why it exists, who’s doing what with whom and why governments and corporations from around the world are literally falling over each other to get here and discover the next big tech thing.

The day finished with an incredible dinner complete with a briefing from Nadiv Tamir Director of International and Government relations at Peres Centre who gave us an insightful first-hand view of the politics of the regions, the stumbling block to peace and the possibilities ahead.

An incredible first day (let me know if you want more details about any of the places I visit or intros to any of the people).

Tomorrow we travel on to Tel Aviv University to explore Agritech / Greentech and Education – can’t wait.

#WishYouWereHere #Innovation #Israel #Future #FuturistSpeaker #StartUp #SiliconValley



Eye on the Future - Nov 18, 2018 | Agriculture, All, Business, Gadgets, Horizon Trends, Innovation, Social, Technology, Work
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