The State of the Union: Our Expert Contributors Respond

President Obama made a case for the future in his State of the Union address. But does his focus on economic leadership and innovation ring true? Our expert contributors offer insight.

The State of the Union: Our Expert Contributors Respond


Innovation: Not as Simple as Obama Made It Sound
Listening to President Obama last night, I wondered if his speechwriters had been reading Stephen Johnson’s new book Where Good Ideas Come From. When the president talked about the unexpected nature of innovation, he was channeling Johnson.
By Adam Hanft, author of Dictionary of the Future

Reinventing America for a Bright Green Future
As the Great Recession slowly recedes, it’s clear that we’re not going back to the world of 2006. But where exactly are we going? In his State of the Union Address, President Obama spoke about investing in innovation to move our country and our economy forward.
By Glenn Croston, author of 75 Green Businesses

Post-SOTU Challenge: Convincing a Nation of Scared People to Innovate
Last night’s State of the Union address laid out our country’s vexing conundrum: how does a nation of scared people innovate its way back to prosperity?
By Cali Yost, CEO, Flex+Strategy Group


Innovation That We Can Believe In
Let’s make 2011 the year we actually make innovation happen–innovation that we can believe in!
By Dr. Alex Pattakos, author of Prisoners of Our Thoughts

We Do Big Things. Really?
President Obama’s State Of the Union speech gave some important cues to green innovators. So is it a message of hope, or a signal to pack your bags and head to China?
By Marc Stoiber, VP Green Innovation at Maddock Douglas

Where Do We Need Innovation?
The State of the Union flipped quickly from the heartwarming Sputnik moment of our generation to the budget-cutting demanded by our economy. The President said all the right things about innovation, but he was limited in his view of where our lives most need it.
By Francine Hardaway, CEO at Stealthmode Partners


Can America Compete Against a Rising Young World?
In a speech pitched in the language of business rather than politics, President Obama challenged the U.S. to “win the future” against a rising tide of new competitors.
By Rob Salkowitz, author of Young World Rising

State of the Union: Out-Innovating?
Three words rang out during the President’s address: Out-innovate. Out-educate. Out-build. Were does that leave us?
By David Brier, Creative Director at DBD International

President Obama and Steve Jobs Talk Like Innovators
To focus on the President’s agenda of clean energy and education is to miss a subtle insight into Obama’s skill as an innovator. You see, Obama knows a secret. Steve Jobs knows it too. The secret is that people don’t think; they react.
By Kaihan Krippendorff, author of The Way of Innovation


Congressional “Dating” and the Power of Symbolism
Congress decided to “mix it up” for the State of the Union address, to sit together instead of opposite sides of the aisle. It was even referred to as “dating,” and fraught with the same social complexity and awkwardness teenagers encounter. This seemed like an empty gesture, but I was quite surprised by the outcome.
By Ruth Sherman, President at Ruth Sherman Associates LLC

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