Preparing for my first World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, I reviewed everything I could find – from the raving to the critical to the cynical to the silly. Ultimately, I am one of those coloured by optimism over our collective future and the power of motivated individuals and groups to realize it. That is why I am excited for every part of the experience.
My optimism is a trait that I share with my fellow Members of the Forum’s Technology Pioneers Programme. We are a group that sees little distinction between technology and magic. Our inner geek holds faith that science fiction is a time machine to the possible. In our industries we have successfully made new social, mobile and cloud technologies relevant to every part of your personal life, and soon business life. We believe that technology can solve many of the world’s most serious problems: poverty, health, education, employment, environment and human rights. In many cases we make a dramatic impact; in others we fail spectacularly. Yet, in our approach, each failure brings us one, or many, steps closer to a solution.
Technology Pioneers are emerging companies that were recognized by the Forum for bringing disruption in our respective industries. And we all seek to take that potential and redefine and lead our industries. This belief – that we can change the essence of how everything works – is what so often attracts us to other groups trying to tackle the broader societal issues facing our generation. We find the passion of those trying to drive societal change familiar. Their singular focus on mission leads them to discard the bias of the status quo and embrace new ways of moving forward, making them a perfect early adopter for next-generation technologies and approaches.
So while you will constantly hear the Tech Pioneers raving about how their product or solution can change your life or the future of your global organization, know that we have a deeper purpose or potential. Sure, I will use the days at the Annual Meeting to communicate how my company can help to revolutionize your industry. But I will seek every opportunity to learn broadly from some of world’s leading thinkers what society needs most – and silently have the will to believe that technology can have a leading role in getting us there.
This year, 30 Tech Pioneers are on their way to take part in the Meeting, which will convene under the theme Resilient Dynamism.
Tech Pioneers will be blogging from Davos on a daily basis during the Annual Meeting, sharing thoughts and impressions from their participation in private and public meetings. It’s going to be an exciting week and we look forward to the discussions, the outcomes and the new ideas.
Author: Narinder Singh is Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer of Appirio, a company that drives the disruptive use of the cloud for large enterprises and 2012 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer. His first experience with cloud technology was as a co-founder and board member of the Sikh Coalition, a civil rights non-profit.
Image: The logo of the World Economic Forum during the Annual Meeting in Davos REUTERS/Christian Hartmann