Robin Chase
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Robin Chase

Founder and Former CEO, Zipcar, Buzzcar and GoLoco; Executive Chairman, Veniam Works and Author

Robin Chase, the founder and former CEO of Zipcar, unpacks the underlying principles that enabled a startup to transform an industry. She is one of the pioneers of the sharing economy.

 
The Future of Transportation in the 21st Century

The future of transportation is urban and multi-modal. Picture cities with one-tenth the cars! We'll choose and move seamlessly using different types of transportation for each and every trip, with an explosion of both public and private offerings.  And not too far into the future, autonomous vehicles will change everything; they could be the ultimate in public transportation and wreak havoc with employment.

People-Powered Innovation

As the rates of innovation and disruption increase, a new organizational framework, Peers Inc., provides a way of reducing innovation risk, and increasing confidence in decision making. By enabling innovation—1) creating a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship; 2) reducing barriers and costs to experimentation; and 3) reducing the costs of the innovation inputs—government and big companies can make it possible for people to do the changing themselves. In this talk, Robin Chase—founder of car-sharing service Zipcar—discusses people-powered innovation.

Collaborative Economy

Sharing is good! An unlikely partnership is creating the smartest, biggest and strongest companies. People working on platforms mean efficiently used resources, co-investment from others, low-cost innovation and very fast learning.

Sharing: A Simple Approach for Maximizing ROI

Zipcar succeeds because it created a platform for the sharing of excess capacity (idle car hours), which reduced costs for everyone who uses the asset. By taking a closer look at the anatomy of sharing (personal, institutional, web 2.0) and dimensions of the assets (physical, digitial, temporal, synergistic, collaborative) we can turn perceptions of scarcity (and cost centers) into a reality of abundance (and profit, innovation centers).

Beyond Web 2.0 (Collaborative Production): Collaborative Consumption, Financing & Infrastructure

The online web 2.0 phenomenon of collaborative production is much loved because of its speed and scalability. Zipcar is an example of collaborative consumption, financing, and infrastructure (a distributed nationwide fleet in existence because of the aggregated demands of its members). Reconceptualizing what it means to collaborate offers an intriguing new way to think about infrastructure investment. What does it mean to create platforms to enable participation?

More Meadows

The strength and resilience of meadows are derived from their diversity, ability to evolve, and collaboration within the system. In highly dynamic environments characterized by uncertainty about the future, we need to reduce risk and increase the likelihood of survival.  The key is to ensure that institutions (and governments) have laid the foundations that foster experimentation, permit learning, and ultimately evolution of successful new businesses that take advantage of unexploited openings (where there is excess capacity) in the ecosystem. In economics, we call these randomized field experiments. Creating more meadows is an important risk reduction and innovation strategy.

Meet Robin Chase

Robin Chase, the founder and former CEO of Zipcar, unpacks the underlying principles that enabled a startup to transform an industry. She is one of the pioneers of the sharing economy.

Since their inception, Zipcar, GoLoco and Buzzcar have been seen as disruptive and innovative: they used technology and marketing to change the way people own and use cars; they changed the ways cities are lived in and built; they changed prejudices about the incompatibility of environmentalism and capitalism. Innovator Robin Chase helps individuals, companies and government understand where to look for innovation and how to enable it. She explores how rethinking “excess capacity” can be combined with technology and platforms for participation to unlock innovation, new profit centers and ultimately lead us to a sustainable planet. In 2009, Robin was honored by TIME magazine as one of the year's 100 Most Influential People. Craig Newmark wrote: "Robin's work illustrates what's best about people using the Internet: not well-intentioned yet futile do-goodism but business that's also a community service. It's about people using the Internet to work together in the service of one another." She has been frequently featured in the major media including Today, The New York Times, National Public Radio, Newsweek and TIME magazines, as well as several books on entrepreneurship. She is author of Peers Inc: How People and Platforms Are Inventing the Collaborative Economy and Reinventing Capitalism (PublicAffairs, 2015).

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Chief Advisor, Uber; Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama (2011-2013); Campaign Manager, 2008 Obama for President; and New York Times Best-Selling Author

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