Southern California is on the cutting edge for the future of the nation. Silicon Beach is growing like gangbusters, with tech startups and major social media players like Snapchat headquartered here. Orange County is not only a hotbed for established biotechnology giants and startups but also a hub for the electronic gaming industry. And let’s not forget the Inland Empire, which is poised to be a nationwide leader in a new era of logistics and fulfillment.
Southern California has always been an iconic location, with a culture sought after globally. But its culture is evolving perhaps more rapidly than ever, being disrupted by some of the best and brightest minds in the world today with an eye on making SoCal the prototype for the community of the future.
It’s no wonder that the “Harvard of culture,” WORLDZ, a gathering of some of the coolest, craziest and most disruptive global thinkers, is taking place here, in Hollywood, Monday and Tuesday. The goal of the summit is to unite icons of today with emerging leaders of tomorrow in an innovative setting. But there is much more happening here.
“In one word, I would describe WORLDZ as EXPLOSIVE,” skateboarding star and entrepreneur Rob Dyrdek said. “A whole bunch of big brains mashing together creating neurological explosiveness.” And Fast Company magazine described the event as the place to find “[t]he most influential minds and brands in the world.”
What has attracted me to the event is that it is not a typical “conference” or networking gathering. It’s more of an interactive ideas exchange meant to build community. “I find it to be a really dynamic community that develops business but more importantly develops us as human beings,” Bert Jacobs, CEO of Life is Good, said. And, as iconic skateboarder Tony Hawk described the event: “There’s this two-way communication. We’re not just speaking at people — we’re speaking with them.”
While WORLDZ boasts an impressive list of attendees, the real meat of the festivities is in the program. For example, Tender Greens founder Erik Oberholtzer is leading a discussion exploring “how food has served as a centerpiece to advance conversations in every area of our globe from environmentalism and free trade to public health & popular culture.” Mindy Hamilton, the senior VP of global partnerships and marketing for Marvel Entertainment, is presenting on leveraging intellectual property through partnerships. And those are just two…