Philip is an economist. He is also a father, a husband, a teacher, a native-born resident of the District of Columbia, a half-Tunisian by descent, and a fan of the original Speed Racer animated TV series.
His writing and research are mostly about entrepreneurship and innovation. To him, that means he is interested in how human inventiveness and decision-making combine to create the future. What’s fascinating to him about this topic is that the future is neither predetermined by the past nor completely open-ended. Our environment imposes constraints on us accumulated from the past; our imagination exposes possibilities for us imminent in the present. Economics is about the choices we make. Entrepreneurship is about the possibilities we realize. Both are essential to creating the future.
His primary professional affiliation is at George Mason University where I’m an associate professor at the school of public policy. Philip is also a senior fellow at the Kauffman Foundation; an advisor to the Clinton Global Initiative; an associate at the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs, Harvard University; and the co-founder and co-editor of Innovations, a quarterly journal about entrepreneurial solutions to global challenges.
In addition to writing, speaking, and teaching, he is also an adviser to and founding partner of three early stage ventures. These ventures are focused respectively on extending the reach and inclusiveness of property rights on a global scale; rethinking student lending in the United States; and building an open-access platform for collaborative 21st century entrepreneurial problem-solving.
Finally, since 2009 he has been part of a team working to bring the celebration of entrepreneurship and innovation to the National Mall. As part of that work he’ll be leading the launch in Fall 2012 of Makers on the Mall, which is dedicated to bringing maker energy to the 30 million people who visit the National Mall each year. In parallel Philip will be participating in the effort to create a permanent center for entrepreneurship and innovation on the National Mall.
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