Everyone agrees about the success of this 4th edition. A plethora of innovations were presented by dynamic start-ups (which are discussed in another article). And many “big speakers” made an impact. Here is a selection of the little sentences from the Tech players that illuminate our connected future.
SPEAKERS WITH MULTIPLE VISIONS
Garry Kasparov, Usain Bolt,Justin Trudeau, Jack Ma – [Photo LCI/Vivatech 2019]
This edition was able to rely on the quality and diversity of the speakers, which allowed for a variety of perspectives from both a geographical (see geo-political) and sociological point of view (alphabetical order):
Garry Kasparov, chess legend, became an Avast ambassador
Ginni Rometty, CEO of IBM
Holly Ridings, NASA flight director
Jack Ma, CEO of Alibaba, a Chinese e-commerce giant
Jimmy Wales, founder of Wikipedia,
Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
Mickey Mikitani, CEO of Rakuten, Inc
Noel Sharkey, Professor Emeritus in AI and Robotics at the University of Sheffield, England
Usain Bolt, ex-sprinter with his electric scooters.
Vas Narasimhan, CEO of NOVARTIS
Young Sohn, CEO of Samsung
TOPICS THAT QUESTION THE SENSE OF MEANING IN TECHNOLOGY
What’s next talks – [Photo Meero/Vivatech 2019]
The multiplication of offers invented by startups or scales-up (especially apps and most of which will not become Unicorns, alas) leads us to ask ourselves today: what are the innovations (that are really) useful in technology? Is the speed of innovation (necessarily) the enemy of the good? Can everyone (really) become tomorrow’s disruptor?
4 years after the more entertaining ”waw” effect of the first edition, this year the world of technology seems to have matured by trying to respond, each in its own way, to the issues it raises.
Conférence Girl power – [Photo Meero/Vivatech 2019]
We’ve observed 3 major topics during the exhibition:
1/ The common good (The credo of France and Europe more broadly)
2/ AI (and its impact on the world)
3/ The place of women in the digital world (“Gender equity” obliged!)
THE COMMON GOOD – FRANCE’S CREDO
[Photo Meero/Vivatech 2019]
Against the giant Chinese and American Tech leaders, France wants to play the moral leader card. The country wants to promote a more humanistic and social vision than the Silicon Valley, while being more open and transparent than China.
To affirm this strategy based on the common good, France is deploying Tech4good for the 2nd year:
- Via a 2nd summit held at the “Palais de l’Elysée” the day before the exhibition, which brought together several dozen entrepreneurs and political leaders from all over the world. They launched the Christchurch appel (in response to the Christchurch attack in New Zealand) to better tackle the issue of violent extremism on the internet and the spread of hate speech
- And at the exhibition, where Tech4good has increasingly highlighted initiatives that focus on social and environmental impacts.
A way to respond to the pursuit of meaning in technological innovation and viewing it as a tool to serve the common good.
Justin Trudeau, Premier ministre du Canada – [Photo Hubinsitute.com/Vivatech 2019]
Some highlights heard on Viva tech:
“Faced with climate and social challenges, innovating to innovate no longer seems reasonable. Technological innovation must be at the service of the common good”. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada
“You have to distinguish between useful innovation and gadget innovation”. Julie Chapon, founder of Yuka, an app. that scans food and cosmetic products to assess their impact on our health.
“You have to be wary of the magical thought that technology will solve all of your problems.” Vianney Vaute, co-founder of Back Market, the platform for selling refurbished devices.
“Responsible investments can be less risky with high valuation potential.” Eva Sadoun, Founder of Lita.co, a company that allows Internet users to invest, from €100, in companies with a social or environmental vocation.
A point of view reinforced by the result of the Mckinsey report commissioned to evaluate the “tech for good”.
“From a micro to a macroeconomic point of view “tech for good” is as beneficial for companies as it is for society… You can have it both ways: better economic growth and a better life.» Eric Hazan, Senior Partner at McKinsey
DIFFERENT VISIONS ON A GLOBAL SCALE
However, France’s and Europe’s desire to move towards a more ethical and humane technology is confronted with different visions on a global scale:
Jack Ma, founder of the Chinese group Alibaba, speaking of European elected officials:”…Everything they do is full of rules and laws… and as soon as they think, they start to worry. When they worry, they make rules and laws.” Unlike Chinese entrepreneurs who, when faced with problems, “start solving them, then think about rules and laws”. He added”…We must not cause problems for everyone because of particular problems”. Before concluding, “I advise governments to embrace the future. »
Jack Ma, Alibaba – [Photo Meero/Vivatech 2019]
Less radical, the major American players are negotiating co-regulation with the European states, their objective being to prevent Europe from imposing too much pressure on them.
According to Yann LeCun (researcher in artificial intelligence and artificial vision, Turing 2019 Price, working at Facebook) “It is for this reason that Mark Zuckerberg met Emmanuel Macron last week in Paris. He asked him to define the content considered acceptable by the French government.
He concluded that Facebook “does not want to work in China because we do not want to provide Facebook users’ data to the Chinese government. »
Yann LeCun, chercheur en intelligence artificielle et vision artificielle. Prix Turing 2019. Facebook – [Photo @marcchemin91/Vivatech 2019]
In concrete terms, Europe raises “four times less funds than China or the United States” and is home to “Only 11% of the world’s unicorns. » Julie Ranty, Managing Director @VivaTech
Thus, if defending the credo of the common good is to Europe’s credit, it must be noted that it could be a credo (of an eternal?) challenger as the 2 large Asia-USA blocks seem to be engaged in a competitive sprint that recalls another older one… By the way, who re-launched the “Back to the Moon” program?
Yonatan Winetraub SPACEIL, Holly Ridings NASA, Oliver Morton MR, Anousheh Ansari XPRIZE FOUNDATION – [Photo @heticVivatech 2019]
Viva Tech 2019 en résumé
- + 24% of participants vs 2018
- The presence of world-class tech leaders
Google, Microsoft, Facebook, Saleforce, Amazon, AWS, Cisco, HPE, Intel, Oracle, EY
Samsung, Softbanks robotics, Huawei
Orange, Capgemini, Thales, Atos, Talan, Bosch
- 19 countries represented, from 5 continents
About 50% of the start-ups exhibited were not French
- All fields were represented
B2B et B2C
Health, mobility, transport, edtechs (education), hrtechs (Human resources), fintechs (finance), smart city and of course Cloud and IT (information technology).