Crotonville: Second Meeting of the Markle Economic Future Initiative

The Task Force for Markle’s Economic Future Initiative reconvened for its second plenary meeting in early 2014 in Crotonville, New York to discuss a new vision of the American Dream in today’s global, networked world. Like the inaugural Initiative meeting held in July 2013, this meeting began by addressing the rapidly changing landscape we live in, focusing on how globalization and technology have gradually displaced older patterns of economic and social life in America and throughout the world. Technological progress is making obvious the limitations of some of our country’s institutions in business, education and government—and in some cases is even eliminating the need for human labor. Yet globalization and technology are also opening new opportunities.

Over the course of the three-day meeting, members and experts in the private, public and nonprofit sectors identified opportunities for America’s future with potential to redirect us toward a reimagined vision of the American Dream. From small business startups to new platforms in education, we see globalization and technology as the very forces that will allow us to seed and scale actions, building toward a promising future for America. With this in mind, the Task Force examined an array of specific examples showcasing the potential of innovative technologies to empower individuals to take action.

Together, the Initiative Task Force members can spur actions that show ways to open up opportunities to benefit from the emerging networked world, including innovations that scale opportunities for work and personalized learning. We look forward to updating you further as the Initiative’s work continues to unfold.

Aspen: Inaugural Meeting of the Markle Economic Future Initiative

Markle’s Economic Future Initiative held its inaugural meeting in July 2013 in Aspen, Colorado. The meeting addressed the economic and social landscape in which we live today, the implications for the American Dream, potential opportunities for economic and sectoral growth, as well as the role of leaders in realizing a new vision for the future.

Leading experts from the academic, non-profit and private sectors informed the discussion, sharing their research and diverse viewpoints. Task Force participants shared their thoughts on how the global economy and new technologies are changing the work of individuals and businesses, how the growing opportunity gap is transforming the social landscape of our country, and current day assumptions about the state of the middle class. Over the course of the meeting, participants discussed a broad range of potential approaches to address the problems identified. The Initiative’s work is fueled by members who are already transforming the sectors in which they work, including higher education, on-line learning, business services, healthcare, and agricultural production. They left the meeting committed to engaging in an effort to set our county on a path to rebuild the American Dream for a new era and continued to engage in a series of working group sessions throughout 2013.