Forum Replies Created
April 7, 2020 at 19:37 #12042
To answer @andreastoppa question about the after-covid19, the forecasts indicate a GDP decrease of about 8/10% and an increase in 150-160% GDP/Public Debt ratio. I fear that even good companies wouldn’t make it, causing a loss in productive capacity. On the other hand, the government programmed a big push to sustain companies and I hope this will mitigate the impact of the covid-crisis.
About today’s conference, It was great! She was extremely clear and gave us many insights into the functioning of VC market. It’s thanks to the commitment and the energy of persons such as Arianna and Mr Lotito that I still believe Italy can move forward.
Finally, I’d love to thank you guys for your enriching comments and for the very challenging environment you participate to create. It was a great way to share views and ideas about innovation policies. The future of Italy wealth is strictly linked with innovation and human talent and occasions such as Pavia Silicon Valley Programme are such an extraordinary way to reason about it and get in the game! A proper thank also to @ismalepaolo for the suggestions and to @robertarabellotti and @paolomarenco for this great opportunity!
Join me on LinkedIn to keep in touch!
Have a great day guys!
P.S: It doesn’t surprise me the @gabriellalocati really interesting quote “Ms. Bonomo said something along the lines of “investors will not put money or time into green energy innovation as far as it will not be convenient“. However, the decrease of Levelized Cost of Energy, (a single metric for evaluating competitiveness of energy resources) and higher capacity factors have been contributing to make green innovation energy much more competitive in the last decade. Check here! Moreover, I can send you the pdf of World Energy Outlook 2019 edited by International Energy Agency. Let me know if you are interested!April 7, 2020 at 5:42 #12015
Hi guys! Thanks for the welcome!
I know I’m late to answer <span style=”text-decoration: underline;”> @ismaelepaoli</span> question about boosting startups/companies’ innovation but the discussion got exciting and it’s very interesting. As with the previous answer, many things have already been said so I’ll try to focus on some new elements.
I’d like to introduce a new point for reflection by quoting the very revealing book “The new geography of jobs” written by Enrico Moretti and edited by Mondadori, Oscar Saggi (I highly recommend you read it!).
“In 1940 the peninsula south of San Francisco was a quiet agricultural region with a comparative advantage in fruit production. The arrival among the orchards of William Shockley, the legendary high-tech pioneer who invented the transistor, was the seed that sparked growth of the local innovation industry. When some of Shockley’s disciples created the first integrated circuit at Fairchild Semiconductor, it became clear that the seed had germinated: the process of clustering had begun. That serendipitous seedling was the starting point of an economic miracle that eventually brought millions of jobs to the region.”
By telling the story of Silicon Valley birth (and many others, like Seattle rebirth; “Will the last person leaving Seattle – turn out the lights”), Moretti wants to point out that there isn’t a successful and unanimously recommended strategy to create an innovative ecosystem. For instance, he claims that very few clusters were born thanks to a big public push or public planning. In fact, many are the critical voices on large federal incentives ($45–80 billion: here the article) towards companies to win their own headquarters over other federal states. As a matter of fact, there are some cases such as the Israel high-tech cluster, lead by military investment for obvious reasons, or the finance cluster in Ireland thanks to an aggressive fiscal strategy. But this is the exception and not the rule.
While it is easy to understand what happens after the birth of a cluster, it is difficult predicting where the initial seed will settle (Here you can find a really interesting paper about the reason why the film industry has settled in Los Angeles in 1920s; Allen J. Scott, Origins and Early Growth of the Hollywood Motion Picture Industry, Princeton University Press. 2005). It is even more difficult to create one from scratch.
In light of this, I believe policies should merely be limited to enable startups and companies to flourish. How? As beautifully said by <span style=”text-decoration: underline;”>@gabriellalocati</span>, “governments need to shift toward an entrepreneur-friendly regulation, flexible labor conditions, fast-track work visas and business-friendly policies”. This would be already enough! Having said that, there are some institutional and cultural factors that slow down the process towards a more innovative environment, as righteously stated by @tommasogagliardi, @andreastroppa and @niccolopuppo. In addition to those, I would mention others just as important that need to be tackled: just think at the fact that Italian productive system is characterized by very small and medium enterprises and the implication of that in our R&D capacity (given the correlation between enterprise size and R&D capacity); or the absence of Italy in the global value chain of high-technological and high-value-added services and products (https://atlas.cid.harvard.edu/countries/111: here you can find Italy Export Basket and Export Complexity); or at the very high public debt crowding out private investment.
To conclude, I’d like to stress some other elements that provide conditions to boost an innovative ecosystem.
Firstly, I believe the dimension of the city (thus of the labour market) matters because it’s more likely that demand and supply of high-skills workers match (that’s why I agree with @giorgiaamatemaggio about Milan). A big metropolitan area provides also specialized service (advertising, legal support, technical and management consulting etc), of which innovative startups and companies continuously need.
Secondly, whit the rise of the innovation sector human talent has enormously increased his economic value. Just think that “Companies like Facebook, Google and Zynga are so hungry for the best talent that they are buying start-ups to get their founders and engineers — and then jettisoning their products.” (https://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/18/technology/18talent.html). For that reason, the government should fund universities much more with the hope to trigger virtuous circles and knowledge spillover (even if the outcome is not guaranteed: here you can find a paper demonstrating how the existence of outstanding scientists measured in terms of research productivity played a key role over, above, and separate from the presence of those universities and government research funding to them; Lynne G. Zucker et al., Intellectual Human Capital and the Birth of U.S. Biotechnology Enterprises, The American Economic Review, 1998).
Have a great day!
TommasoApril 6, 2020 at 6:39 #11987
In light of this, I’d like to share some passages of Luca Ferretti’s paper, written together with his research group at the University of Oxford:
“Transmission occurring rapidly and before symptoms, as we have found, implies that the epidemic is highly unlikely to be contained by solely isolating symptomatic individuals. Published models (9–11, 32) suggest that in practice manual contact tracing can only improve on this to a limited extent: it is too slow, and cannot be scaled up once the epidemic grows beyond the early phase, due to limited personnel. […] Considering our quantification of SARS-CoV-2 transmission, we suggest that this approach, with a mobile phone App implementing instantaneous contact tracing, could reduce transmission enough to achieve R < 1 and sustained epidemic suppression, stopping the virus from spreading further.” Luca Ferretti et al., Quantifying SARS-CoV-2 transmission suggests epidemic control with digital contact tracing, 31st March (https://bit.ly/2yFrKoR)
Finally, I agree with @gabriellalocati and @chiarasperto that “the disclosure of such knowledge can fuel discrimination in countries where the leadership is not necessarily distinguished for its democratic values“. Moreover, the tracking system can lead to social stigma and speculation over personal lives if not well-designed (https://bit.ly/3bVIOVS; https://nyti.ms/2wfwSyT).
To avoid such scenario, I believe EU should define a policy of deployment through ad-hoc legislation and commit deleting all data at the end of the crisis, as recently suggested in an IAI paper (https://www.iai.it/it/pubblicazioni/technology-exit-strategy-covid-19).
For those of you who are interested in Quantum Computing, here you can find a Ted Talk 🙂April 6, 2020 at 6:30 #11983
Since many things have already been said, I’ll try to point out some other elements.
Firstly, I’d like to stress that social tracking system works only if accompanied by mass testing to asymptomatic and paucisymptomatic (and right now testing centres do not have enough capacity) as well as by isolation in ad hoc facilities.
Having said that I believe, as most of you, that in a pandemic crisis public health shall prevail over privacy. At this regard, in addition to what @gabriellalocati stated about the constitutional coverage of the social tracking system, I believe it would be in accordance with the European Treaties as well (art. 168 TFUE). The temporary nature of the measure and the constitutional coverage makes me confident that there would be no risk in Europe.
Furthermore, as long data are gathered anonymously and aggregated, as stated by @gabriellalocati, there should be no concerns about the duration of the measure, to link with @chiarasperto. Just for the records, Google is already gathering data for all countries of the world (https://www.google.com/covid19/mobility/) – even if they are not so useful.
In addition, it was WHO itself to recommend tracing: “We have seen a rapid escalation in social distancing measures, like closing schools & cancelling sporting events & other gatherings. But we haven’t seen an urgent enough escalation in testing, isolation & contact tracing, which is the backbone of the #COVID19 response“.April 6, 2020 at 5:25 #11980
My name is Tommaso Alabardi and I am 26 years old. I majored in Government and Public Policy at the University of Pavia in April 2019 and I am currently a Temporary Research Associate at the Department of Political Science of the University of Pavia. My research activity concerns asymmetric regionalism and inter-municipal cooperation.
Unfortunately, I learned about this programme only one week ago and I didn’t get to join the first two conferences. Nevertheless, I am pleased to contribute to the discussion in the next few weeks. I have already read most of your comments and it was very enriching!
I have always been passionate about innovation and how it drives economic growth. Let me share with you what I think is a remarkable interpretation of innovation given by Arnold Harberger, professor emeritus at the University of California.
In 1998, he wrote that Total Factor Productivity (that is the Solow residual in the Production Function of the Neoclassical Growth Theory) growth is not caused only by technological progress and technical innovation, but it can come from many things, “at least 1001 ways”. Since many economists believe that TFP improvements stem only from innovations, he preferred to name the TFP as Real Cost Reduction. I’ve always found this interpretation clever because it gives an insight about what really drives companies motivations, preoccupations and decisions. (Arnold C. Harberger, A Vision of the Growth Process, in The American Economic Review, 1988: http://www.econ.ucla.edu/harberger/vision.pdf)
I believe this programme gives me the chance to broaden my awareness about innovation policies and deepen my knowledge in innovation processes.
Furthermore, I have seen through Linkedin that participation in this programme has a great impact on the lives of the previous scholarship winner. Pavia Silicon Valley 2020 is a great chance to attend highly educational conferences, to discuss with other highly motivated students and, eventually, to get inspired and discover new job opportunities.
To answer <span class=”handle-sign”>@</span>ismaelepaoli first question, unfortunately, I have not been involved in such an experience with technology that would deserve a story. Nevertheless, it often happens that some books or articles about disruptive technologies get my attention. One of those was “Quantum Physics for Poets“, written by Christopher T. Hill e Leon Lederman and edited by Bollati Boringhieri, 2013. Reading about quantum physics and all his potential application (cryptography, computing, teleportation of information, just to mention few), amazed me for how far humans can move forward. Meanwhile, It made me think how prominent will be the technical-scientific system in the next years, reducing the space of autonomy for the politicians, as if technique and politics become one.
To conclude, I’d like to share with you a quote about innovation that I find really revealing.
“The most profound technologies are those that disappear. They weave themselves into the fabric of everyday life until they are indistinguishable from it.” Mark Weiser, computer scientist and Chief Technology Officer at Xerox PARC, Research and Development Company in Palo Alto, California.
Have a great day!