A powerful thesis developed by entrepreneur and venture capitalist Steve Case (CEO of Revolution) reads as follows: Silicon Valley’s innovation diaspora is migrating to parts known (e.g., the Boston area) and unknown (e.g., Cincinnati). However, people in New Bedford have been innovating for centuries. New Bedford was not deemed the wealthiest city in the world twice because it was a “copy-cat”.
Its historical prominence was in textiles and whaling. Now, New Bedford is emerging as a chief innovator in:
- Sustainable seafood landings
- Climate-responsive municipal energy policies, including solar power and off-shore wind
- Diversified, high tech manufacturing.
To bolster all of this, the United Way of Greater New Bedford has created an innovation fund aimed at regional, social and public service agencies. Among the biggest grand challenges the fund will be addressing are: health (UNSDG 3), education (UNSDG 4), and social justice (UNSDG 11).
ImpactLABS to serve on Innovation Fund Advisory Committee
ImpactLABS is now a part of the innovation fund’s advisory committee. As a member of this committee, we are thrilled to:
- Support innovation through social impact — including alignment with the UNSDGs
- Deploy innovative technology
- Explore new approaches to helping people
ImpactLABS Managing Director Chris Rezendes is having a blast serving on the committee, where he can marry his passion for social justice with his experience in tech to achieve community resilience through newer, more durable business models.
Moving forward, ImpactLABS’ role in this committee will include: reviewing applications, conducting interviews, participating in selection processes, mentorships, and more. Much of this will be taking place over the next 2 months.