Archbridge Insider February 2018

Who is the Greatest Tech Entrepreneur in U.S. History?

Welcome to a new edition of the Archbridge Insider. From all of us at the Institute, we hope you’ve had a great start to 2018.

We’re sure this year will be one for the history books, recorded for the next generation with thousands of photos taken by people all over the world. Although in many places it is now more unusual not to have a camera than to have one on hand at all times, recreational photography was quite rare just a century ago. We wouldn’t be taking selfies today if it weren’t for one young American with a mission to create a camera that “any child could operate.” Gary Hoover contends George Eastman, founder of Eastman Kodak, is the greatest tech entrepreneur in U.S history. Find out why in the latest installment of our American Originals series.

Eastman was certainly a great entrepreneur. We can tell from his story that he employed his cognitive strengths and non-cognitive abilities — better known as soft skills — to make his American Dream a reality. In our latest Medium article, Director of Programs Ben Wilterdink presents a condensed but thorough literature review on why soft skills are crucial in the labor market and for economic mobility. Ben also wrote a compelling op-ed on why interstate compacts do nothing to solve the problem of occupational licensing.

Speaking of great entrepreneurs, we’re very excited to welcome Steve Mariotti, founder of the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, to our Board of Advisors. Steve has spent decades making an impact in entrepreneurship education and helping spur an entrepreneurship revolution, and we’re very honored to have him as part of our team.

We have an exciting year ahead with upcoming research from Scott Winship, Ed Timmons, Ben, and myself. Stay tuned!


Gonzalo Schwarz
President and CEO | Archbridge Institute


New from the Archbridge Insitute

George Eastman: The Greatest Technology Entrepreneur in U.S. History?

Advisory Board member Gary Hoover tells the story of George Eastman, quite possibly the greatest technology entrepreneur in U.S. history. His love of photography led him to create a camera so simple “any child could operate” it. Yet more impressive was Eastman’s desire to give back, donating millions to universities and charity organizations across the globe.

American Originals traces the stories of those who charted their own paths and achieved a better life for themselves and those around them by embracing personal responsibility, hard work, and an entrepreneurial spirit.

Analysis: Skills for the 21st Century — Building Human Capital for Economic Mobility

Archbridge Director of Programs Ben Wilterdink argues for the importance of soft skills in our increasingly service-based economy. With minimum wage increases and helicopter parenting becoming the norm, he argues that children and young adults are missing opportunities to gain the soft skills that employers want in today’s labor market.



Op-Ed: Interstate Compacts Aren’t the Right Way to Fix Occupational Licensing

In a Wall Street Journal op-ed, Secretary of Labor Acosta and South Dakota Governor Daugaard outline their plan for interstate compacts that allow holders of an occupational license in one state to receive a temporary license for that occupation when moving to another state within the compact. Archbridge Director of Programs Ben Wilterdink explains why this does nothing to resolve the barriers to mobility caused by occupational licensing.


What We’re Reading

This Way Up: New Thinking About Poverty and Economic Mobility
The American Enterprise Institute and Opportunity America have produced a booklet of essays on issues related to economic mobility. Topics covered range from personal dignity and civil society to welfare reform and the earned income tax credit.



Pathways Magazine: A New Social Contract
In the Winter 2018 Pathways Magazine, Senator Mike Lee and Dr. Scott Winship assert: “The future of the safety net lies in expanding contemporary reforms to encourage work.” Senator Elizabeth Warren writes instead that we must adapt our welfare to address the gig economy.



Video Spotlight

Resolved: 15 Million Americans Would Be Better Off Without Welfare
The Soho Forum hosted Tarran Bragdon of the Foundation for Government Accountability and Neera Tanden of Center for American Progress to debate whether the welfare of Americans in poverty is helped or harmed by government handouts.



Charles Murray: Right Questions and Wrong Answers
On January 8, Charles Murray celebrated his 75th birthday and retired, moving to an emeritus role at the American Enterprise Institute. He spoke of his many influential books and the impact his discoveries had on his life and worldview.




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