Yesterday I attended the NYC Symposium for Social Change. The focus was impact investing. My friends from City Light Capital made the case for investing with a high bar for return and social benefit. Seth Pinsky, NYC EcoDevo, made the case for NYC global hub for the innovation economy and pointed to efforts to improve access to capital, facilities, and talent.
The highlight of the meeting was Chancellor Joel Klein’s rousing case for NYC as hub for the learning revolution. It’s clear that there is more education talent in NYC than anywhere else on the planet including intermediaries, school developers, charter networks, advocates, data shops, investors, publishers, and foundations. Klein’s efforts to open the system to outside operators and partners is driving innovation and improvement. Despite massive opposition from a recalcitrant union, an expanded iZone, scaled School of One, more charters, and (finally) a new virtual high school make NYC hub of the learning revolution.