Rainforest Rev: Crossroads Breed Innovation

The Rainforest Revolution
News on growing ecosystems for innovation and entrepreneurship


Greetings to the builders of the new economy. That means you.

Three months from today—February 15-21—the world will gather in Silicon Valley.  For the third time, entrepreneurs, innovators, and dreamers from over 50 countries will convene at the Global Innovation Summit + Week seeking ways to create value in the new economy.  Please click here to register before November 30 and get 20% off!




Morocco’s Startups At The Crossroads

Victor Hwang, CEO & Co-Founder of T2 Venture Creation, from Forbes
Crossroads are breeding grounds for innovation. For instance, Silicon Valley is a result of the American frontier, where ambitious people from diverse backgrounds were smashed together in a serendipitous cacophony. Morocco is in a similar situation. Is it African? Is it Arab? Is it European? The answer, of course, is yes. Read more here.


Economic Complexity: A Different Way to Look at the Economy

Santa Fe Institute
The traditional view of the economy as a system of balanced exchanges between rational agents is being challenged by new theories like complexity economics, in which agents react in more varied and unpredictable ways to a “nonequilibrium” economy that is constantly evolving. Read more here.


Charles O’Reilly: Finding a Corporate Culture that Drives Growth

Stanford Business
After examining the role corporate culture played in the rise of prosperous high-technology firms, Stanford Graduate School of Business researchers concluded that the most “adaptive” cultures had the greatest contributions to their companies’ success. Read more here.


Cooperation: This Time, Between Man and Woman

Social Evolution Forum
Conflict and cooperation are intrinsically linked: dividing up the benefits of cooperation causes tension and conflict, including between men and women. Read more here.


10 Books That Every Startupper Absolutely Must Have on the Bedside Table

The Google translation of an Italian blog that describes the most essential reading for entrepreneurs recommends 10 English-language books, including The Rainforest: The Secrets of Building the Next Silicon Valley, by T2 Venture Creation’s Victor Hwang and Greg Horowitt. Read more here.




If You Build an Innovation Hub in Siberia, Will They Come?

Russian officials seek to jump-start a tech industry in the most unlikely of places – Tomsk, a university town 1,900 miles east of Moscow. They’re hoping the city makes up in brainpower what it lacks in…well, everything else. Read more here.


Chinese Gadgets Signal New Era of Innovation

The Wall Street Journal
A new generation of entrepreneurs is changing the face of Chinese business, basing their reputations on creativity and innovation in an economy known more for its ability to cheaply manufacture copied designs. Read more here.


Maryland “International Incubator” Woos Foreign Start-ups

Republic 3.0
An incubator focused exclusively on foreign companies residing in the United States – has emerged from a partnership between the University of Maryland and the Maryland state government. Read more here.




Demand Solutions 2014 — Venture Night

December 2, 2014  |  Washington, D.C.

Demand Solutions: Ideas for Improving Quality of Life is a one-day event sponsored by the Inter-American Development Bank and the Blum Centers at UC Berkeley and UCLA.  The event will close with an exciting Venture Night where some of the most innovative and disruptive startups established by young entrepreneurs from Latin America and the Caribbean will present their projects, chosen in a competition, which will be evaluated on Venture Night by a panel of expert judges.  Register here.



Application deadline is December 31, 2014. 

We seek the world’s top companies and organizations that enable the super-linear growth of the ecosystems around them. They must catalyze the ideals of connectivity, openness, diversity, and trust that are essential to the innovation process. They must nurture the success of others.  Rather than a simple “Best Of” list, where one focuses solely on the entity itself, we are looking at what the entity does to catalyze more activity around itself.  We seek to reward those entities that create multiplier effects beyond themselves, that catalyze the growth of entire ecosystems.

Applications will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • Connections: does the company/organization connect people that are otherwise disconnected in meaningful, productive ways?
  • Platform: does the company/organization lower the cost of doing business across an entire system?
  • Culture: does the company/organization foster trust in the community, industry or society?
  • Motivations: does the company/organization demonstrate social responsibility or sustainable, systematic impact?
  • Team: how does the company/organization collaborate with employees, advisors, suppliers, distributors and other partners?


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