What began as an audacious dream 12 years ago – a university where people could learn about the unanticipated impact that technology would have on our future – has turned into a global movement. With chapters in more than 100 cities around the world, tens of thousands of alumni of our executive education programs and summits, and a network of experts that span the globe, the SU community is vast and vibrant.
Over these many years, our community has thrived in primarily face-to-face, in-person forums. It has come to life in classrooms, cafes, conference halls and countless other locations where two or more people have connected to talk about the impact of technology, the great opportunities we have to solve the challenges of humankind, and their personal commitments to creating a better future. While the ideas, energy and passion that fuel our community have been boundless, the one limitation we have faced has been that of distance. We needed to find a way to bring the members of our community together, from Abuja to Zurich, so that they could continue learning, connecting and sharing their experiences and expertise in a way that can accelerate our shared pursuit of positively impacting billions of people around the world.
Today, I’m thrilled to announce the launch of our Global Community. A digital home for all members of our community to come together at a single, digital address. The community is open to anyone, anywhere, who wants to be part of the leading network of purpose-driven individuals, organizations, governments and universities in the world. Starting today, you can become part of this digital community at app.su.org for free. The only price of admission is an interest and commitment to engaging with the content, discussions, and people that you meet to create a better future against the backdrop of ever advancing technology.
While no amount of explanation can replace the experience of just jumping right into the community and experiencing it for yourself, here are the three primary reasons that I think you should stop reading this blog post and spend the next few minutes joining instead.
Groups – the heart of the community
The first thing that you should do once you have logged in is to join a group. The primary groups include Leadership & Transformation, Technology, and the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Within each group you will find topics to follow such as Artificial Intelligence, Health Tech, Gender Equality, Quality Education, or Future Planning. In each of these groups you will find people who share your interests as well as articles and topics to fuel discussion and debate. You will also find a special COVID-19 group that is discussing how the pandemic is leading to an acceleration of change in every facet of our lives. NB: The first thing you need to do is join a group and start following topics you care about. I’m not kidding. You will thank me.
Chapters – your local connection in a digital world
The second step is to find a chapter in your city, country or region to join. This is where you will be able to join in a conversation with people who share a passion for creating positive change in the place you call home, wherever that may be in the world. And if you, like me, have called a number of places home or have multiple cities where you work, you can join multiple chapters. I’m personally a member of the Brisbane, Miami and Seattle chapters and it’s great to connect with the teams in each of those cities to hear what they are doing on a monthly basis to bring their community together.
Members – people who are just like you but different
Finally, the community would be nothing without the people you’ll meet. When you join you will find thousands of like-minded people who all have different backgrounds, experience and perspectives, but are all united by a shared interest in technology and improving the state of the world. While you will encounter people throughout the community, I highly recommend looking at the list of members by “Profession.” Here you will find educators, engineers, entrepreneurs, members of government, scientists and more as the list grows almost every day. It is a great place to find others with whom you share a lot in common, or possibly someone with a very different background that can provide the missing insight on a project you are working on (e.g. a quantum AI researcher).
I genuinely hope that you will sign up and join the thousands of members who are part of what I believe are some of the most important conversations that are happening on the planet everyday. I look forward to seeing you there.