Beyond BigTech: LowTech, SmallTech, and WiseTech

Navi Radjou
Mar 10 · 1 min read

Challenging #BigTechs’ monopoly on innovation (and its dubious social value) Dr. Michael Joyner at Mayo Clinic shows how SMALL TECH — led by grassroots #makers — can use tech meaningfully to solve our major social & ecological problems faster, better, cheaper:

https://www.wired.com/story/have-we-reached-peak-big/

While #LowTech focuses on the HOW of innovation (i.e. sustainability), #SmallTech tackles the WHO of innovation (de-monopolizing innovation by empowering grassroots #makers).

The #WiseTech concept I propose integrates the goodness of #LowTech and #SmallTech and completes them by asking a more fundamental question: “WHY do we innovate?” i.e., what’s the PURPOSE of innovation, and what’s the INTENTION of the innovator (as the Buddhists would say: “how noble is your sankalpa (intention) when you innovate?”)

Let’s broaden and deepen the debate on #BigTechs by raising 4 key questions:

WHO should (can) innovate? Rather than break up #BigTechs, how can the government EMPOWER grassroots #makers & citizen #scientists? Tom Kalil did some excellent work in this area when he was at the White House in the Obama administration.

HOW can we innovate frugally using fewer resources — without overtaxing the environment and people (burnout is rampant in Silicon Valley)?

WHY do we innovate? The purpose of innovation should be to tackle big global problems (climate change, inequality)

WHAT do we innovate? How can we create innovative products/services that benefit the MASSES rather than the elite (a $1,000 smart phone benefits only 10% of the global population)?

#frugalinnovation #WiseTech #LowTech #SmallTech #jugaad #bigtechs

Navi Radjou

Written by

Indian-French-American Scholar in Frugal Innovation + Wise Leadership. TED Speaker. Author of Conscious Society (2019). Visit: NaviRadjou.com