The Digital Health Summit at CES attracted fewer attendees in 2015. Compared to 2020, tech giants were just exploring the health industry’s potential. But my eyes were opened, not to any particular technology or concept, though many were extraordinary, but to the full throttle commitment to breakthrough innovation. Global, age-indifferent, and inviting to new entrants and traditional players from other industries!
Disruption on this scale will benefit some and displace others. Over these past five years, I contemplated how a region can prepare for the rapid innovations coming in this decade. As I wandered the labyrinthine aisles of the exhibit floor, row by row, room by room, I couldn’t help but wonder. Could the Pittsburgh region ride the waves of change successfully and competitively? What would it take to maximize opportunity and minimize disruption?
True, our region boasts internationally recognized institutions across higher education, medical research, and tech entrepreneurship. But these assets will have to realize their combined potential to thrive in a new era. With a finite window for transformation, Pittsburgh needed a reboot. Inspired by CES, JHF launched a daring experiment, challenging our regional institutions to envision their evolution to 2030.
How do we bring the excitement and inspiration of CES to a whole region? Liftoff PGH is an event and a movement, activating more than 1,000 change makers in technology, health, education, and entrepreneurship to reimagine Pittsburgh’s future health care ecosystem. Participants will venture through five immersive Explorations, fueled by an electric mix of speakers, exhibits and interactive learning. We aspire to create an ambitious vision—and connect the people to realize it. We may not achieve our highest aspirations, but what if we do? What if one event catalyzes a regional transformation?
For Pittsburgh, the collective challenge is to reinvent how we effect change, to disaggregate ideas from sectors, and envision an economy based on unfettered innovation. CES has provided a few of us with an essential window to what lies ahead, but also a critical model of ambitious planning. Can local leadership in health delivery, finance, government, education, and philanthropy boost a city’s potential for wildly innovative collaboration? We’ll see. Thank you CES
It’s in our DNA to cross industries and make unusual connections. The difference now is scope and scale.Karen Wolk Fienstein
I3, the flagship magazine from the Consumer Technology Association (CTA)®, focuses on innovation in technology, policy and business as well as the entrepreneurs, industry leaders and startups that grow the consumer technology industry. Subscriptions to i3 are available free to qualified participants in the consumer electronics industry.