Social Entrepreneurship and New TechnologyPosted by admin on Oct 25, 2013 in Blog, Slideshow | 0 comments
I love the ideas that come through our Center. I’m always seeing students who want to start new organizations, offer different services, and create innovative products. The one thing I don’t love, though, is listening to a great idea involving technology that gets followed up with, “So…I guess it’s not really Social Entrepreneurship.”
I already wrote something on what social entrepreneurship means to me, so I won’t repeat myself, but I worry people associate social entrepreneurship with nothing more than really efficient canned-food drives. Not that there’s anything wrong with canned food drives – Victor Cruz eats a can of soup during every game… with the team mascot, no less.
For every amazing but admittedly low-tech company like Tom’s Shoes or a Fair Trade coffee distributor, there is a high-tech social enterprise looking to help improve our world and that’s a great thing. American entrepreneurship and technology go hand and hand –Apple, Google, Microsoft, Facebook –and social entrepreneurship can and will follow suit. Well-established enterprises like GuideStar and newcomers such as Litterati are just a couple of examples of high-tech social entrepreneurship.
The need for social entrepreneurs to think about and embrace technology is one reason the Mason Center for Social Entrepreneurship is hosting a Drone Hackathon next Saturday (November 2). The event is intended to get individuals from different educational backgrounds together and thinking about innovative ways to use new technology. Drones are particularly exciting because of the potential uses we’ve yet to realize for the new technology. We all know about military drones – but what about drones to collect soil samples from remote locations or survey rain forests from high altitudes.
It all goes down at George Mason University’s Engineering Building in Fairfax on Saturday (again…November 2) from 9:30am – 4:30pm. They’ll be a drone build and a separate hackathon of pre-made drones using NodeCopter technology. GMU Doctoral Candidate, Chris Vo, will be providing an informational session on how to use NodeCopter and then participants are encouraged to go hands-on!
Registration information can be found at http://dronehackathon.eventbrite.com/.