New Entrepreneurial Growth Conference

Six years after the Great Recession, the headline numbers for the U.S. economy appear headed in the right direction. GDP growth is surging, unemployment has fallen, and the stock markets have reached record highs. Yet despite all this good news, there remains a sense of unease about the nature of this growth, a feeling of matters still unresolved, waiting to trip the economy into an ever deeper rut than it has been these past few years.

This counter-narrative is based on long-term trends: the falling rate of startups; widening economic inequality between the owners of capital and the ever more depleted wage-earners of the middle and lower classes; the globalization of labor markets and its effect on American workers; and the impact of technology on jobs, eliminating as many, if not more, than it enables.

The Kauffman Foundation’s conference on New Entrepreneurial Growth is intended to find a path between technological utopianism, which promises a glittering new economic future of ever higher productivity, and those who paint a grimmer picture in which most humans find themselves sidelined from the economy. We want to turn our attention to the sources of growth and, in particular, look for ways to spur a new era of entrepreneurial growth.