Techonomy Events

A User’s Manual to Techonomy Health and NYC in Mid-May


Scenes from last year’s Techonomy NYC. (Photos by Rebecca Greenfield.)

When we put together Techonomy’s conferences about tech’s impact, we become absurdly ambitious. We aim to signal as aggressively as we can what might happen next, or at least what smart leaders need to be thinking about. To do that, we seek juxtapositions of speakers and topics that generate sparks and lead to unexpected insights and revelations. We hope our audience at the end walks out with excitement, rethinking how they do their jobs and how their companies ought to operate.

Yes, it’s impossible. But it’s fun to try, and the results are always worth witnessing. So we hope you will join us as the ideas unfold May 16th and 17th on West 46th Street in Manhattan. We’ll spend the day Tuesday on how tech is changing health, from how insurance works to re-writing the human genome. Then Wednesday the entire span of Techonomy’s obsessions goes on display in midtown, from the search for more effective corporate innovation to the challenges of climate change.

At Techonomy Health you’ll hear Arianna Huffington in conversation with JPMorgan Chase chief marketing officer Kristin Lemkau about a very macro view of health–how to bring human values into the workplace, and how to treat ourselves more gently and each other with more respect.

Longtime wholistic health researcher Dr. Dean Ornish will explain what led both Bill Clinton and Steve Jobs to take his advice and become vegans. But more than that, he’ll address what’s changed in our lives as community has moved online and the traditional source of human solace and comfort we’ve all found in our physical networks dissipate and go virtual. He is pretty sure the virtual world is not in itself going to be enough to keep us truly healthy.

Along with such big-picture thinking will be a deep dive into the roles of data and artificial intelligence in healthcare. The AI session will be led by renowned journalist David Ewing Duncan of Arc Fusion. We’ll also hear a top leader from Cleveland Clinic talk with CEO of Philips North America Brent Shafer about how tech can create a continuum of healthcare that spans our daily life, our doctor visits, and what happens when we get sick.

One session will hone in on what all these tech advances, including genomics, mean for the more effective detection and treatment of cancer. Separately, we’ll discuss how changes in media cause us to learn and think differently about health. And throughout the day we’ll hear from a raft of innovative healthcare disruptors and startups tackling everything from the more effective administration of insurance to how pills will communicate to us from inside our guts. HealthTap CEO Ron Gutman will be among these change-making leaders. And yes we’ll talk about what Trumpcare and Obamacare mean for healthtech innovation.

And that’s just the first of two days! We challenge our audience to stretch their brains. That continues at Techonomy NYC on Wednesday. It opens with a big-picture look at how tech might get us out of the multiple messes we find ourselves in–with government going haywire globally and a looming climate catastrophe, just to name two massive challenges that should concern all of us. It’s a profoundly insecure age, but we’ll highlight promising ideas about how tech might reassure or even save us.

General Electric Vice Chairman Beth Comstock will deconstruct how big business is changing in a digital era–and how that impacts marketing, product development, and even how companies structure themselves and interact with employees. (She spoke with us in 2015 for Techonomy’s magazine.) Another session zeroes in on the challenges of corporate innovation in even more detail.

One panel will hone in on what makes New York’s tech ecosystem unique and powerful. We’ll include VC Karin Klein of Bloomberg Beta, Tech:NYC’s Julie Samuels, and General Assembly CEO Jake Schwartz.

WeWork co-founder and Chief Design Officer Miguel McKelvey joins Johnson & Johnson’s Chief Design Officer Ernesto Quinteros and serial entrepreneur Bre Pettis to examine why design now matters so much. And we’ll hear from other top entrepreneurs like Upworthy CEO Eli Pariser, and Indiegogo Chief Business Officer Slava Rubin.

Blockchain leaders from Microsoft and Accenture help explain why that bizarre and promising technology could change how we track information about ourselves and our identities. And a panel including two military strategists from West Point will explain how the battle against ISIS is going online. If we’re going to beat them we have to win a battle waged with ideas as well as guns.

There will be all kinds of other sessions: Backchannel’s Jessi Hempel will lead one on the meaning of authority in an empowered age; another will look at the future of work in an on-demand age; one talk will examine how to regulate and control proliferating drones; and one will look at how technology will transform construction. We can’t even fit it all in here.

If you believe all this stuff matters you need to join this discussion. We want your ideas, too, to help us figure it all out.

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