The Value of Connectivity

Facebook had a study done by Deloitte a few weeks ago called “Value of connectivity” (the link to the full report is here and the foreword reads as follows (bold added):

The knowledge economy is the future of the world economy and the Internet is its backbone. Yet, currently, only about 1 out of every 3 people can go online.’s goal to make access available to the remaining two thirds of the world will bring the same opportunities available in the connected parts of the world to everyone.

As a global partnership, is working to harness the experience, wisdom and resources of people and companies across the world to understand and solve the challenges of the connectivity gap. Driven by this goal, Facebook engaged Deloitte to assess the economic and social impact of extending Internet access in the developing world. This report is the outcome of that initiative. And Deloitte’s conclusions are compelling: global connectivity will help lift millions out of poverty and drive important positive social and economic change.

This project is the first in an ongoing series of sponsored research projects that will also examine barriers to affordable access and the efficacy of potential solutions. We look forward to engaging with other independent research organisations and academics on projects that support the goal of extending access to the Internet.

At our core, we believe everyone, everywhere, should have the same opportunity and ability to be connected to each other and to connect to the knowledge economy.

Facebook, on behalf of

Moore School #1 in Undergrad & Grad International Biz

The first and only, to my knowledge, B-School named after a woman continues its leadership in international business education.  The 3 minute video starts slowly showing a celebration event but warms up with the Moore School’s leaders talking about the U.S. News & World Report #1 rankings.

UAE moving to a Knowledge Economy

US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker – excerpt from remarks in Abu Dahbi

Let me be clear: This trade mission is not a one-time push. Instead, this is the continuation of a long and fruitful partnership that began decades ago, and will extend for decades to come as the businesses on our trade mission become part of the fabric of the UAE economy. And I am pleased to know that the UAE leadership also takes a long-term view. For example, transformative infrastructure and economic development plans are part of Abu Dhabi Vision 2030 – which is investing $90 billion dollars through 2017 in key projects. With Abu Dhabi’s population set to more than double in just 15 years, businesses from both our countries can help this emirate fulfill its potential as it moves toward a diversified, knowledge-based economy.

Complete remarks here

Facebook and the Knowledge Economy

Congratulations Facebook on 10 years! Celebrate today. Tomorrow we get back to “building the Knowledge Economy!”

2014 Bill and Melinda Gates Letter

“More and more, technology will help in the fight against corruption. The Internet is making it easier for citizens to know what their government should be delivering—like how much money their health clinic should get—so they can hold officials accountable. As public knowledge goes up, corruption goes down, and more money goes where it’s supposed to.” {Just one of many key examples why we should be developing the Knowledge Economy globally.}

The calculus behind foreign aid is simple: When we help children in developing countries grow up and contribute to their societies, we create the conditions for a more stable, peaceful, and productive world.  {If the US applied 2-3% of the Defense budget to increase US foreign aid from 1% to 3% of GDP to match Norway, the most generous country, I suspect that our need for our Defense budget would be reduced by much more than the 2-3%.}

Learn more at  {my edits}

POTUS, SOTU, and the KE

“Listen, China and Europe aren’t standing on the sidelines, and neither should we. We know that the nation that goes all-in on innovation today will own the global {knowledge} economy tomorrow. This is an edge America cannot surrender. Federally funded research helped lead to the ideas and inventions behind Google and smartphones. And that’s why Congress should undo the damage done by last year’s cuts to basic research so we can unleash the next great American discovery. There are entire industries to be built based on vaccines that stay ahead of drug-resistant bacteria, or paper-thin material that’s stronger than steel.” … Entire speech here – editorial insertion is mine

UAE: more research, more skills

The National:  The transformation from an oil-based economy to a knowledge-based one is not only an important priority for UAE policymakers, it should be a priority for every individual in society. The Federal National Council (FNC) began calling for more emphasis on research at UAE universities after its education committee found that in 2010 only 0.2 per cent of GDP was earmarked for research. A knowledge-based economy is focused on the production and management of ideas, technology, data and information. It is much different to the current oil-based economy. The transformation from one to the other will include investment in building human capacity first before increasing budgets – and research is an important part of this. “No research, no knowledge-based economy”, was the accurate assessment of Dr Mona Al Bahar, an FNC member from Dubai and the chairwoman of the education committee. Building a knowledge-based economy is at the forefront and centre of Abu Dhabi’s Vision 2030. … Read the full article

DUBAI: The Gulf Today: One of the world’s foremost education policy makers has encouraged teachers and education officials to focus on building students skills and the ability to solve problems, rather than just focusing on basic knowledge to boost education in the region. “Skills have become the single most important driver of the success of individuals and nations,” said Andreas Schleicher, the deputy director for education and skills and special adviser on education policy to the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD). “The single most important finding from our analysis is in fact that the knowledge economy no longer pays you for what you know. Google knows everything these days. The knowledge economy pays you for what you can do with what you know.” Schleicher oversees the administration of the test and is widely regarded as the foremost authority on improving education around the world. The PISA test results are widely seen as a measure of how a nation is likely to fare in the knowledge economy. … Read the full article

Richard Florida – How To Build …

Technological innovation is a key factor – if not the key factor – in economic growth and job generation. But in today’s knowledge economy, the capacity to innovate and generate new high-tech industries and jobs is much more concentrated and clustered in some places than others. Why? That’s a question that has long vexed economists and policy-makers. A new study focusing on the key concept of “innovation productivity” offers a new take on this question. The authors — my University of Toronto colleagues Ajay Agrawal and Alberto Galasso, Boston University’s Iain M. Cockburn, and Georgia Institute of Technology’s Alexander Oettl — previewed their research on the VoxEU blog in late December.  Full article

John Kerry: Think about it

Today: Secretary of State John Kerry – speaking in Jerusalem about the latest discussions with Prime Minister Netanyahu and President Abbas:  The benefits for both sides are really enormous, and people don’t talk about it enough or think about it enough. One of the reasons I’m going to Saudi Arabia is that Saudi Arabia’s initiative holds out the prospect that if the parties could arrive at a peaceful resolution, you could instantaneously have peace between the 22 Arab nations and 35 Muslim nations, all of whom have said they will recognize Israel if peace is achieved.  Imagine how that changes the dynamics of travel, of business, of education, of opportunity in this region, of stability. Imagine what peace could mean for trade and tourism, what it could mean for developing technology and talent, for job opportunities for the younger generation, for generations in all of these countries.”  [emphasis added]   The full press briefing


PCAST Recommendations on MOOCs

The President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST) released a letter report to the President about opportunities for advanced education technologies to improve educational outcomes and lower costs in higher education. The report, which builds on insights from PCAST members and additional outside experts, underscores the promise of new high-tech educational tools and advocates for continued experimentation in the education technology domain.    Rest