Schedule

8:00-8:20
Registration & Coffee—Provided by Jitterz

8:20-8:35
Opening Remarks
Alex Meade

8:40-9:00
Cityflag: Bringing Citizens and Government Closer
Alberto Altamirano, Alberto Gomez, Eduardo Bravo

Educating people, the value of civic engagement goes beyond the classroom or City Hall. Cityflag is contributing to the development of engaged citizens and civic leaders by building up the direct service capacities. Cityflag introduces the use of government technological platforms to expand public participation channels while facilitating transparency and accountability of public management. It includes apps and web services for citizenship, as well as programs of digital inclusion and civic innovation applied directly to the communities.

9:05-9:45
State of Latino Entrepreneurship
Mark Madrid

According to The State of Latino Entrepreneurship 2016 by the Stanford Latino Entrepreneurship Initiative, the five-year average growth rate in the number of Latino firms has remained at double or triple that of the national average for the past 15 years. However, Latino businesses tend to remain small, struggle to scale, and experience higher than average failure rates. What are some of the unique barriers to scaling their businesses and what resources are available to assist them?

9:50-10:30
The Rise of Ed Tech: Connecting Students with Opportunities
Felix Ortiz III, Uriel Sanchez

Education technology is on the rise and is transforming the educational experience of thousands of students and future employees. Can the rise of ed-tech startups change the course of unemployment?

9:50-10:30
Innovation in Workforce Training
John McGlinchey, Julian Alvarez

According to Oxford University, 47% of jobs will disappear in the next 25 years.
Students currently enrolled in college will likely end up having a job that has yet to be created. With new advances in tech infrastructure and cybersecurity, learn why it is critical for governments, businesses and educators to provide the most current certifiable IT training programs for their workforce and students.

10:00-12:00
Mission + Erbil
Shared_Studios Portal

10:35-11:15
Social Entrepreneurship: Building Better Systems by Unlocking Changemakers
Annie Plotkin

Ashoka has pioneered the field of social entrepreneurship, identifying and supporting the world’s leading social entrepreneurs since 1980. Social entrepreneurs are individuals with innovative solutions to society’s most pressing social, cultural, and environmental challenges. They are ambitious and persistent — tackling major issues and offering new ideas for systems-level change.

10:35-11:15
The Business of Going Green in Texas
Natalie Campos Goodman, Chris Ripley

“Going green” is more than a trend! Public and private institutions are choosing to follow environmentally-friendly practices in order to save money. Hear from two up-and-coming Texas startups that are making it more economically-enticing than ever to be sustainable.

11:20-12:00
Developing Cities Through Virtual Reality

Virtual Reality promises a new platform for gaming and filmmaking, but did you know VR could be the next big thing in Downtown Improvement? Learn how New Rochelle and New York City are pushing the boundaries of virtual and augmented realities to create vibrant Arts and Technology Districts.

11:20-12:00
Disrupting the Public Sector: Innovation in Government
Daniel Lucio, Juan Pablo Escobar, Alberto Altamirano, Alex Meade

People expect the same service and user-experience standards of the private sector from the public sector. However, the public sector possesses structural disadvantages that make disruptive innovation more difficult, but difficult is not the same as impossible. We’re beginning to see signs of disruptive innovations gaining a foothold in city services, education, and health care. If our political leaders truly want to deliver more for less, they’ll need to explore the formidable tools at their disposal to nurture disruptions across the public services landscape.

12:00-1:00
Lunch—Provided by Whataburger

1:00-3:00
Mission + Mexico City
Shared_Studios Portal

1:00-1:45
The Cilantro Diaries: Business Lessons From the Most Unlikely Places
Lorenzo Gomez

Lorenzo Gomez went from the stockroom of a grocery store to the boardrooms of two private companies without a formal higher education. In his inspiring and humorous true story of hope and accomplishment, he shares the steps he took up the ladder and the guiding principles that got him to the top. The direction and motivation he provides in The Cilantro Diaries will help you find a mentor, build a network, establish a reputation, rise above the competition, and move far beyond entry-level jobs into a profitable and satisfying professional career.

1:00-2:30
Leaders for Community Action & Equity
Antionette Carroll

Using Creative Reaction Lab’s Equity-Centered Design Process, students, activists, nonprofit leaders, designers, artists, entrepreneurs, and the common person alike can develop innovative and impactful approaches challenging systemic issues in the Rio Grande Valley. When it comes to becoming a better community leader, learn how to transform ideas into actions!

1:45-2:30
From URLs to IRL: People-Centered Civic Engagement
Drew Galloway, Michael Henderson, Maximo Anguiano

If cities are the laboratories of democracy, how can people encourage experimentation in our government? A civic paradigm shift is already underway, forcing social media to get real and local government to get digital. Civic tech and social entrepreneurs must harness viral moments, converting them to real life activism. Politicians and city managers too must innovate by replacing standing in line with clicking online. And it’s all powered by us: the people.

2:30-3:00
Does Size Matter? Helping Cities Go from Small to Smart
Chelsea Collier

The term “Smart City” makes its way into almost all conversations regarding the future of urban planning and local government. But, exactly is a “Smart City”? Learn about what makes a city “smart,” the state of smart cities in the US versus the world, and how small cities possess the opportunity to lead the smart city revolution. 

2:30-3:00
Can Innovation Districts Bring Industry Back?
Javier Paredes, Idira Kempis

A new complementary urban model is now emerging, giving rise to what we and others are calling “innovation districts.” These districts, by our definition, are geographic areas where leading-edge anchor institutions and companies cluster and connect with start-ups, business incubators and accelerators. Instead of isolated corporate campuses like Silicon Valley, some places are trying to promote “innovation districts” to bring industry back. Can it work?

3:00-3:15
Coffee break—Provided by Jitterz

3:15-3:35
A City for Everyone: Equitable Economic Development
Lena Afridi

How can we foster economic progress while maintaining our traditions? Can neighborhoods be revitalized without displacing residents? Discover how new financial models and policy changes are pushing for an ethical approach to redevelopment. 

3:15-3:40
Smart Cities: Preparing RGV Kids for the Future
Julia Barraford-Temel

In an era of accelerates technological growth and fast-changing workplaces, how can we make sure that our children will be ready for the jobs of the future?  Join us for an exploration on what Mission is doing to prepare its residents for the new economy.

3:40-4:30
Shaping the Future of the RGV: What’s Next?
Mike Perez, Sam Garcia, Alex Meade

Innovation, resilience, equity, social entrepreneurship. What do any of these concepts have to do with the Rio Grande Valley? Join us for a discussion on the steps local leadership and community members should to take in order to prepare its residents for the future economy.

4:00-6:00
Mission + Australia
Shared_Studios Portal

4:30-4:35
Closing Remarks

4:35-6:00
Reception—Sponsored by Sequel