Expect a major boom in innovation after the COVID-19 crisis subsides. That is the conclusion of veteran journalist Llewellyn King in a major op-ed piece, distributed to newspapers and other outlets this week by InsideSources.
King argues that after wars and other great dislocating events, there has been a boom in innovation. He traces this partly to the ending of rigidities which have built up in society, limiting innovation and new entrepreneurial activity. The boom in creativity has also been driven by many weak industries contracting. In his op-ed, King lists for the COVID-19 pandemic, “movie theaters, retailers, restaurants, and small colleges and universities.”
He says, “This will throw a great deal of talent out of work. Those are the people, I believe, who will create a new innovative wave in society and bring about a new prosperity after some very hard times.”
King likens the coming innovation boom to the one that followed World War II when “innovation was for everyone and it showed in everything, from the building of Levittown on New York’s Long Island and its descendants to the civilian uses of nuclear power, the arrival of FM radio and color television, revolving credit and, oh, the mini skirt.”
King says that big companies will want to shore up their situation. He singles out electric utilities which will deepen their defenses against cyberattack, physical attack or other failure.
Another feature of the new order of innovation, according to King’s op-ed, will be a reassessment of expertise. He quotes Michael Short, associate professor of nuclear science and engineering at MIT, as saying that the current crisis will bring back respect for experts.
Lack of confidence in experts goes back to the tumultuous 1960s, says King, and can be seen in differing approaches to the current pandemic. He rails in his op-ed against “hearsay medicine and ‘voodoo’ science.”
King theorizes that the Internet gives entrepreneurs with new ideas a unique opportunity to draw attention to their inventions which has not existed before.
King has had a long journalistic career on three continents — Africa, Europe and America — and has created many new products, including the publications Women Now, The National Examiner, The Energy Daily, Defense Week and New Technology Week and “White House Chronicle,” the news and public affairs television program, now in its 23rd year.
You can see the full piece here. ◊
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