Changing the World through Innovation and Engineering - Judy Estrin, CEO JLabs LLC

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Judy Estrin, CEO of JLabs LLC and a serial entrepreneur discusses why innovation is so important and what it takes to be an entrepreneur. Estrin was involved in the development of TCP/IP and is a …

Judy Estrin, CEO of JLabs LLC and a serial entrepreneur discusses why innovation is so important and what it takes to be an entrepreneur. Estrin was involved in the development of TCP/IP and is a former Cisco CTO. A Stanford Engineering alum, she spoke at the school's annual eDay event.

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  • 1. Judy Estrin CEO, JLabs, LLCCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008 1
  • 2. Changing the World Through Innovation and Engineering •  One engineer’s path •  Innovation •  Opportunities and challengesCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 3. Shaping My Career (and Attitudes) •  Academic/scientific family - strong role models •  Fell in love with computer science - appealed to my problem solving skills •  Involved in early development of TCP/IP and the Internet with Vint Cerf •  First job with a small company: early move into management – interacting with people, applying technology •  Never imagined I would become an entrepreneur or write a book on innovation •  My most important and fullfilling ‘achievement’ is my 21 year old sonCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 4. Range of Experiences Academic Entrepreneurial Corporate Computer science • Bridge • CTO Cisco • UCLA Communications Board member of: • Stanford • NCD • Disney (current) • Early networking • Precept •  FedEx research • Packet Design, LLC • Rockwell Advisory Boards • Sun Microsystems • Mother! Author - Closing the Innovation Gap, McGraw-Hill, 2008 Over 100 interviews with innovators, leaders, educatorsCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008
  • 5. Entrepreneurship is a State of Mind •  Many types of entrepreneurship - VC funded start-up, small business, within large company, academic, social •  Entrepreneurship does not require any special degree - however engineering education does provide a good foundation for entrepreneurship •  Entrepreneurship = passion, flexibility, intelligent risk, operating lean, identifying needs and disruptive approaches, discipline and drive •  Entrepreneurs are: •  Willing to tackle seemingly impossible problems •  Able to balance a strong vision and persistence with assessment and flexibility •  Comfortable with ambiguity - often need to make decisions without hard dataCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 6. Imagine Our World Without…… Dustbuster, HDTV, home Safe buildings or bridges gyms, video games…… New forms of clean energy Mobile devices or GPS and transportation Advances in healthcare The Internet, web, New materials for bikes, facebook, twitter….. clothes, packagingCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 7. All Brought to You by Engineering and Other Types of Innovation •  Engineering: “practical application of the knowledge of pure science” or building things that solve problems. Engineers truly can change the world •  Innovation: “something new or different” – in science, engineering, arts, social sciences, business....or all of the aboveCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008
  • 8. Once is Not Enough •  Sustainable innovation drives economic growth, quality of life and is the only hope of addressing the major challenges that we face – energy/ environment, healthcare, security, education…. •  It is also very personal, impacting our lives at home, school and work •  Innovation is about identifying human needs – sometimes before people realize they have them •  Innovation is messy - you need to be willing to invest without knowing the outcome. It doesn’t just happen, but needs to be nurtured like a gardenCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008
  • 9. Core Values = Capacity for Change Questioning Curiosity, self-assessment, non-judgmental, free flowing Risk Vulnerability, attitude toward failure, fail early, learn from failure Openness To imagine, new data, sharing, surprise, change Patience Tenacity, patient capital Trust In oneself, in others, safety net (bankruptcy, healthcare, education) Values need to be in balance.COPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 10. Fear Works Against Change •  Fear comes in many forms: safety, failure, not fitting in, criticism, funding, litigation, political agendas…. •  It is a hard time to trust: •  Ability to get a good education, affordable healthcare, a job •  Banks, government, business leaders doing the right thing •  Need to rebuild foundation one step at a time through innovation and leadership at individual, organizational, national and global level •  Key is to turn threats into challenges that inspire, engage and motivate actionCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 11. Many Opportunities for Innovation Healthcare: Energy Expanding to include independence and wellness, delivery of care sustainable to sick, elderly or environment disabled and additional Creation of new focus on affordability industries Disruption of existing mature industries (edu, commerce, food, health, Technology: transportation, entertainment…) Infrastructure Focus on affordability, upgrade security, mobility requirements: Intersection of Physical and Digital disciplines: bio, nano, US and Globally IT, social sciences, Changing demographics: design Age, ethnicity, economicCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 12. Inevitable Unintended Consequences •  Cars – accidents, Oil refineries – climate change, High fructose corn syrup – obesity/diabetes, email – spam/phishing •  Powerful and positive advances in information technology are molding our culture but with unknown and unintended social consequences •  The world is flat but…. •  It is uneven – increasing income gaps •  It is increasingly shallow and impatient – depth of thought and depth connections decreasing (quantity over quality, number of vs substance of interactions) •  The online world only involves sight and sound – impact on our emotional development if smell, touch and taste are “under-developed”? •  Awareness and balance vs denial or rejection •  Consequences = problems that drive new innovationCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008
  • 13. 21st Century Talent •  Education system and popular culture are currently working against innovation – undermining core values •  Create the right soil and plant seeds for the future: •  Adaptive - ability to learn, capacity for change •  Framing questions, not just answering them •  Playfulness, exploration, experimentation •  Active patience •  Collaborative •  Interdisciplinary: deep and wide foundation •  Scientific and technologic literacy •  America needs more engineers, scientists, innovators – we have fallen behindCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011 Copyright © Judy Estrin 2008
  • 14. Many different measures of success Wants and needs may differ at various stages of your career and life •  Money - Enough to be comfortable? Always more? •  Impact - On the world? On a community? On individuals? •  Power - Over others? To effect change? •  Happiness - Challenged? Pleasure? Personal/career balance? Service to others? Service to oneself? •  Recognition - Among peers? As the best - celebrity? •  Realizing your potential - Measurement? Never enough? •  Always moving up? Always taking the next step? •  ???COPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 15. What Does Success Mean For You? •  Think about your definitions of success - don’t automatically subscribe to what you think is “expected” •  If you have the interest – engineering provides a great foundation for many different paths •  Balance your focus on making things happen and being open to serendipity •  Not everyone wants to, or can be, a leader of other people, but each of us is our own leader - responsible for our pathCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011
  • 16. What can you do? www.theinnovationgap.comCOPYRIGHT © JLABS, LLC 2011