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Friday, March 11 • 2:00pm - 3:00pm
Rebooting Iceland: Crowdsourcing Innovation in Uncertain Times

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In the US, social media innovators are changing the way people work and play. In Iceland, these innovators may offer the best hope of rescuing an entire nation. Iceland emerged in the 1990s as a financial powerhouse after a thousand years on the sidelines of global history. Icelanders became one of the world’s wealthiest and happiest nations. In 2008, three of its banks collapsed, sending the national economy into a tailspin and shattering the people’s trust in government and industry. The government was quickly replaced by one promising transparency and reforms, while a protest party headed by a comedian took control of the Reykjavik city council. This new cast of politicians is not alone in their efforts to move Iceland out from under the economic cloud. Members of the country's tech and entrepreneurial sector, which saw explosive growth in the lead-up to the collapse, have emerged as leaders in grassroots efforts to set Iceland on a sustainable path. In 2009, a loosely-organized group calling themselves the Anthill convened a “National Assembly” of 1,500 citizens. The day-long event, based on Agile methods and crowdsourcing theory, resulted in a coherent set of values, vision and ideas. A second National Assembly was held in 2010 as a preparatory step in the development of a new national constiution. Inspired by open-source processes and leaning heavily on social media technologies, these citizens are rapidly prototyping new forms of democracy utilizing the web and open innovation.

avatar for Dilja Amundadottir

Dilja Amundadottir

ProducerCCP Games
avatar for Gudjon Mar Gudjonsson

Gudjon Mar Gudjonsson

CEOMedizzaOver an entrepreneurial career spanning two decades, I have focused on building innovative companies and fostering big-picture thinking through visioning, agile planning methodologies, and by leveraging social media technologies. While I am currently the CEO of Medizza... Read More →
avatar for Heida Helgadottir

Heida Helgadottir

CEOBest PartyI received a BA in political science from the University of Iceland in 2009 and was top five in my class. During my studies I worked as a representative at the International Office at Reykjavik University. After graduation I was hired as head of communications... Read More →
avatar for Gunnar Holmsteinn

Gunnar Holmsteinn

CEOBirdcoreI love trying to understand things that are so extensive that it’s just too hard wrapping your head around them. At Birdcore, we get a bunch of those things when we empower developers to create richer applications with our text mining platform. Prior to founding Birdcore... Read More →
avatar for Derek Lackaff

Derek Lackaff

Asst Professor of Interactive MediaElon UniversityI am an Assistant Professor of Communications at Elon University in Elon, North Carolina. I teach in the Interactive Media MA program, and my research explores the relationships among communication systems and sustainable political... Read More →

Friday March 11, 2011 2:00pm - 3:00pm CST
Austin Convention Center, Room 9ABC

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