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Vivek Wadhwa      

Entrepreneur, Emerging Technologies Expert, Academic & Celebrated Author

Vivek Wadhwa is an academic, entrepreneur, and author of five best-selling books: "From Incremental to Exponential"; "Your Happiness Was Hacked"; "The Driver in the Driverless Car"; "Innovating Women"; and "The Immigrant Exodus".

He has been a globally syndicated columnist for The Washington Post and has held appointments as Distinguished Fellow at Harvard Law School’s Labor and Worklife Program, Carnegie Mellon University, and Emory University; adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon and Duke University; fellow at Stanford Law School and UC Berkeley; and head of faculty at Singularity University.

Wadhwa is based in Silicon Valley and researches, speaks, and writes about advancing technologies that are transforming our world. These advances – in fields such as robotics, artificial intelligence, computing, synthetic biology, 3D printing, medicine, and nanomaterials – are making it possible for small teams to do what was once possible only for governments and large corporations to do: solve the grand challenges in education, water, food, shelter, health, and security.

In 2012, the U.S. Government awarded Wadhwa distinguished recognition as an “Outstanding American by Choice” for his “commitment to this country and to the common civic values that unite us as Americans”.

Wadhwa was also named one of the world’s “Top 100 Global Thinkers” by Foreign Policy magazine in that year; in June 2013, he was on TIME magazine’s list of “Tech 40”, one of forty of the most influential minds in tech; and in September 2015, he was second on a list of “ten men worth emulating” in The Financial Times. In 2018, he was awarded Silicon Valley Forum’s Visionary Award, a list of luminaries “who have made Silicon Valley synonymous with creativity and life-changing advancements in technology”.

Speech Topics


When Apple announced that it was developing a watch that had the functions of a medical device, it became clear that the company was eyeing the $3 trillion healthcare industry; that the tech industry sees medicine as the next frontier for exponential growth. Apple isn't alone. Companies such as Google, Microsoft, and Samsung and hundreds of startups also see the market potential and have big plans. They are about to disrupt health care in the same way in which Netflix decimated the video rental industry and Uber is changing transportation.

This is happening because several technologies such as computers, sensors, robotics, and artificial intelligence are advancing at exponential rates. Their power and performance are increasing dramatically as their prices fall and their footprints shrink.

We will soon have sensors that monitor almost every aspect of our body's functioning, inside and out. By combining these data with our electronic medical records and the activity and lifestyle information that our smartphones observe, artificial intelligence-based systems will monitor us on a 24x7 basis. They will warn us when we are about to get sick and advise us on what medications we should take and how we should improve our lifestyle and habits. And with the added sensors and the apps that tech companies will build, our smartphone will become a medical device akin to the Star Trek tricorder.

Technologies such as Apple ResearchKit are also going to change the way in which clinical trials are done. Data that our devices gather will be used to accurately analyze what medications patients have taken, in order to determine which of them truly had a positive effect; which simply created adverse reactions and new ailments; and which did both.

Combined with genomics data that are becoming available as plunging DNA-sequencing costs approach the costs of regular medical tests, a healthcare revolution is in the works. By understanding the correlations between genome, habits, and disease - as the new devices will facilitate - we will get closer and closer to an era of Precision Medicine, in which disease prevention and treatment are performed on the basis of people's genes, environments, and lifestyles.

Vivek Wadhwa will give you a crash course in exponential technologies - such as computing, Artificial Intelligence, sensors, synthetic biology, and robotics - and describe how they will converge and help turn our sick-care system into one that can truly focus on health care.


Not long ago, you could see your competition coming. Management guru Clayton Christensen coined the term "disruptive innovation" to describe how the competition worked: a new entrant attacked a market leader by launching low-end, low-priced products and then relentlessly improving them. Now Christensen's frameworks have themselves been disrupted...because you can no longer see the competition coming. Technologies are no longer progressing in a predictable linear fashion, but are advancing exponentially and converging. Fields such as computing, medicine, artificial intelligence, 3D printing, robotics, nanomaterials, and synthetic biology are advancing simultaneously, and combining these allows one industry to rapidly disrupt another before market leaders even know what has hit them.

Practically every industry will be disrupted over the next few years, including finance, insurance, healthcare, manufacturing, transportation, education, I.T. services, and communications. Very few of today's Fortune 500 companies will be on that list by the early 2020s. They will go the way of Blockbuster, Kodak, RIM, Compaq, and Nokia.


Unprecedented advances in technology have now made science fiction a reality. In only a handful of years, we've moved to the near worldwide use of handheld computing, the full mapping the human genome, and the advent of drones and driverless cars, to name just a few life-changing developments. This trajectory of technological advancement is only getting faster.

Based on his critically acclaimed new book The Driver in the Driverless Car: How Our Technology Choices Will Create the Future, Vivek Wadhwa not only explores the amazing technologies that are just now being integrated into our lives and work, but he also shares both the dilemmas and the solutions of technology advancement. Using his wonderfully vivid storytelling skills, he examines how Artificial Intelligence, Autonomous Machines, Robotics, Synthetic Biology, etc. are impacting fields of healthcare, education, transportation, energy development, investment management and more, analyzing the huge benefits as well as the economic and social consequences He shares a three-pronged assessment that gauges whether a new technology will benefit everyone equally; whether the rewards outweigh the risks; and whether it promotes autonomy or leads to dependency.


How Elon Musk's Starlink Got Battle-Tested in Ukraine
May 4, 2022 ... Fast-expanding satellite broadband services are proving decisive during war and other emergencies. By Vivek Wadhwa, a columnist at Foreign Policy, entrepreneur, ...
Quantum Computing Is Even More Dangerous Than Artificial ...
3 days ago ... The world already failed to regulate AI. Let's not repeat that epic mistake. By Vivek Wadhwa, a columnist at Foreign Policy, entrepreneur, and author, and ...
Why We Live In A Golden Age Of Innovation
Sep 19, 2021 ... Moreover the technologies are evolving rapidly and, as Vivek Wadhwa et al point out in their book, From Incremental To Exponential (Berrett-Koehler, 2020), ...
Vivek Wadhwa: Apple should buy Tesla and make Elon Musk CEO
CNBC Contributor Bill George, Senior Fellow at Harvard Business School and Fmr. Medtronic Chairman, and Vivek Wadhwa, Fellow at the Rock Center for ...
Vivek Wadhwa - The Washington Post
Vivek Wadhwa is Distinguished Fellow and professor at Carnegie Mellon University Engineering at Silicon Valley and a director of research at Center for ...
Singularity University - We spread ideas with exponential impact ...
Vivek Wadhwa and Robert J. Shiller. “When you study finance, you are studying how to make things happen, on a big scale, on a lasting scale…and that has to ...
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Vivek Wadhwa: Silicon Valley Has a Code Name for Sexism & Racism
VIVEK WADHWA: The sad reality is that Silicon Valley is a boys club that stacks the deck against women and certain minorities. This may have been okay when ...
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