"We always talk about brain drain, but we're not brains on the run. We are a resource for and on innovation." It’s the focus of the Adnkronos interview with Luca Maestri, Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Apple, one of the "emigrants of honor" (along with Alessandra Lanzara, Professor of Physics at the University of Berkeley from 2002, to Maria Grazia Roncarolo, Professor at Stanford, and Andrea Calcagno, Engineering Graduate and Founder of the Cloud4wi start-up) invited to the official lunch held by the President of the Republic Sergio Mattarella visiting Silicon Valley for the Italy-USA Innovation Forum. "We can give back to Italy" continues Maestri, and the thought runs to the center of innovation Apple recently created in Naples, as a return of knowledge (and value) to the Country System.
On the table of related suggestions, an interesting give-back project based on the circulation of talent. "Why," Lanzara proposes, "don't even think in the opposite direction?" Perhaps by supporting the creation of an Italian center of excellence in Silicon Valley, which promotes innovation (scientific and industrial, in the first place), and that works in synergy not only with our Country, but also with the American institutions, with the aim of creating a real advanced research knowledge exchange. All of this, in order to create the know-how that Italy needs today, "because, unfortunately, there is still no transition from research to innovation in our Country." The hope message starts from a Forum, the one held at the same Palo Alto University that recently inaugurated a new training course focused on the importance of our Humanism. And that has chosen Florence as the cradle of a work of rebirth for Italian and European culture, in the name of cornerstones such as innovation and ethical values.
In the background, the Italian urgency to make decisive moves to regain ground, especially in boosted acceleration fields such as cloud computing, big data, internet of things and artificial intelligence. In the era of ultra-rapid changes (and consequent need to equip adaptive business models), with the technology sector alone leaping from a value of 50billion dollars (in 1980) to the current cubage from 1,500, to tack to 9,000 in 2025, be ready to play an active role is no longer just an opportunity, it becomes a duty. Because, citing the maxim of another Forum guest of honor, C3.ai founder Thomas Siebel, "if you're not on the train, then you stay on the track."
The Italy of researchers: beautiful, mature, and always heart-breaking
Lights and shadows from the 2019 CNR Report on Research and Innovation