Today we’re launching #OpportunityRedefined, a digital dialogue series about the future of social problem solving in America. Our goals: lift up amazing leaders and ideas, provoke conversation, and incite boldness in addressing the toughest challenges we face in early childhood development, education, economic empowerment and public health.
We decided to launch #OpportunityRedefined because we sense a moment of real turmoil, transition, and energy in the social innovation community and the country. Inequality of justice and opportunity are top-tier national issues. A Presidential campaign is underway in earnest. And while it can seem like gridlock, partisanship, and bad news dominate the airwaves, there’s more to the story. Advances in science, economics and technology, coupled with bold entrepreneurial ventures, are moving us decisively in the direction of cracking the case on social challenges that have bedeviled America for generations. The people behind these bold leaps inspire us on a daily basis and they are the ones who will bring #OpportunityRedefined to life.
The first installment of #OpportunityRedefined will cover changing notions about upward mobility in America. The discussion will feature some amazing participants: John Rice (Founder & CEO of MLT), Alex Bernadotte (Founder & CEO, Beyond12), Allen Blue (Co-founder, LinkedIn), Mia Birdsong (Vice President, Family Independence Initiative), Kirsten Lodal (Founder & CEO, LIFT), Maria Teresa Kumar (President & CEO, Voto Latino). These and other participants will be digging into some big questions:
What does it mean to be on a path to opportunity in the U.S. today? Will the systems, strategies, and organizations we're creating, with the intention of increasing access to opportunity, cut it? How are our own assumptions about who is on a pathway to opportunity—and who’s not, and WHY they’re not—reinforce the very problems we seek to solve? What are we learning about the ways that race and class wind through these pathways from people who have cracked the code themselves? How can technology close - and widen - gaps? What is the significance of personal networks in upward mobility? And how does each of us fit into this story?
We’ll be posting regular content on this blog and across Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn with the hashtag #OpportunityRedefined. We’ll also be holding a Google On Air Hangout conversation with some of our participants during the second week of July. If you’re interested in receiving details about the event, sign up for the newsletter at the bottom right of this webpage.
The more honest feedback and engagement we get from you, the reader, the more valuable the series will be. Please let us hear your voice!