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18 Conference Report #techonomy2018

IQ2 Debate: Silicon Valley Has Lost Its Soul

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  • Intelligence Squared debate at Techonomy 2018: Has Silicon Valley lost its soul? (Paul Sakuma Photography)

Speaker

Leslie Berlin
Historian, Silicon Valley Archives and Author, Stanford University

Noam Cohen
Journalist/Author

Dipayan Ghosh
Pozen Fellow, Harvard Kennedy School

Joshua McKenty
Vice President, Pivotal

Moderator

John Donvan
Host & Moderator, Intelligence Squared


Description: Intelligence Squared U.S. joins Techonomy for an Oxford-style debate on whether or not “Silicon Valley has lost its soul.” In this wide-reaching conversation, we ask: Has a culture inspired by innovation been corrupted by power and venture capital? Are today’s tech companies and the engineers that drive them peddling products that are harmful and intrusive instead of designing tools that bring people together to solve collective problems? Or is Silicon Valley living up to its idealist roots by serving as the engine of American innovation while tackling some of our toughest social and political challenges head-on?

Tech journalist and author Noam Cohen, who covers the influence of digital technologies on global culture and the economy, teams up Harvard’s Dipayan Ghosh, who led strategic efforts to address privacy and security at Facebook and served as a technology adviser in the Obama White House, to argue for the motion. They’ll face renowned Silicon Valley historian and author Leslie Berlin and her partner, technologist Joshua McKenty, the founding chief architect of NASA Nebula and current VP of the systems advisory group at Pivotal.

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