Mark Minevich, Chief Digital AI Strategist and Co-Chair, AI for the Planet

Mark Minevich is a highly regarded and trusted Digital Cognitive AI Strategist, Artificial Intelligence expert, Global Social Innovation and Technology Executive, UN Advisor, Leading Author and Columnist, Private Investor/Venture Capitalist, and the principal founder and President of Going Global Ventures. He is an award-winning technology executive and has published two books and over 40 articles on AI, Industry 4.0, IoT.

Mark is newly appointed Chairman of the Executive committee of AI for Good Foundation. Mark is a Chief Digital Strategist at the International Research Centre for AI, under the auspices of UNESCO. Mark is Sr. Advisor to Boston Consulting Group Boston Consulting Group. Currently, he serves as the strategic advisor and Global ambassador to the CEO and Chairman of New York based Amelia/ IPsoft Inc. Mark collaborates and advises large global enterprises both in the US and Japan (Hitachi). Mark is Advisory Partner to Canadian Growth Investments and Business Advisor to Infosec Global.

In a recent interview with Digital First Magazine, Mr. Minevich discussed his life journey, current trends in AI industry, global trends and innovation, metaverse, challenges faced in professional journey, personal inspiration, and future goals. Here are excerpts from the interview.

What is the definition of leadership for you? As a leader, should one create more followers or leaders?

I believe that a leader should create more leaders, not followers. A leader is someone who inspires and motivates others to achieve their goals. A leader also has the vision and foresight to see the potential in people and help them to realize their own leadership potential. Creating more leaders ensures that there are more people working towards making the world a better place. Creating more followers does not necessarily create positive change, and can even lead to negative outcomes if those followers are not inspired or motivated to achieve anything.

Share your experiential learning in this life journey.

One of the most important things I’ve learned in my journey is the power of networking. Building a strong network of supportive people is essential for any entrepreneur. These people can provide advice, mentorship, resources, and opportunities. They can also be a sounding board for new ideas and help you navigate through difficult times. If you take anything away from my journey, let it be the importance of networking. It really is the key to success.

Having recorded experience as a technology executive and UN advisor, how would you describe global technology trends and innovation?

Technology is evolving at an accelerating pace and is becoming more sophisticated and integrated into our everyday lives. We are seeing a trend towards climate-friendly and sustainable technologies, as well as a move towards more personalized and bespoke solutions as a result of the inception of Web 3. Concretely, we are seeing steady development in the fields of carbon capture, climate risk analysis and management, as well as distributed ledger technologies.

How have artificial intelligence and technology practices changed in the last decade?

There has been a shift from general-purpose AI technology that can be used for a variety of tasks, to more specific and targeted AI applications. This is in part due to the increasing amounts of data that are available, as well as the development of new methods for training and deploying AI models. We are also seeing a move away from rule-based systems towards more data-driven approaches, which is enabled by the increased compute power and storage capacity that are now available.

With AI innovation across industries, organizations can better understand all aspects of business strategy, risk, and ethics. How can they make informed decisions about AI applications by assisting them with the deployment of AI?

There are a number of ways in which organizations can make informed decisions about AI applications. Firstly, they need to ensure that they have a clear understanding of their own business goals and objectives. They also need to understand the state of the art in AI technology and how it can be applied to their specific domain. Additionally, they need to consider the ethical implications of AI and make sure that their AI applications are aligned with their values. Finally, they need to think about the risks associated with AI and put in place measures to mitigate these risks. After taking all of these factors into consideration, organizations can then start to deploy AI applications.

How do you foresee AI technology trends impacting the global business landscape?

We are in the midst of one of the worst recessions in history, and AI is playing a major role in helping organizations to survive and thrive during these challenging times. AI is being used to automate tasks, improve decision-making, and drive efficiencies across the board. We are also seeing a move towards using AI for predictive maintenance and forecasting, as well as for managing supply chains and logistics. In the future, AI will become increasingly ubiquitous and integrated into all aspects of business. For example, we will see AI-powered chatbots and digital assistants becoming the norm, and businesses will need to adopt AI in order to remain competitive. Personalization of the customer experience will also become more important, and AI will play a key role in enabling this.

How do you leverage your AI knowledge and innovation efforts to expand capabilities and positively impact social innovation and climate change?

I am very passionate about using AI for good and I believe that it has the potential to make a positive impact on social innovation and climate change. I am currently involved in a number of initiatives that are aimed at using AI to help solve some of the world’s most pressing problems. For example, The AI For Planet Foundation is a non-profit organization, which is using AI to help tackle the global climate crisis. Currently, we are working on defining AI-driven solutions that can aid in the transition to a low-carbon economy. Artificial intelligence has a tremendous number of use cases in climate change, including environmental monitoring, carbon trading, and renewable energy. For example, smart grids that use AI can help to optimize energy usage and reduce wastage, while also increasing the integration of renewable energy sources. Additionally, AI can be used to develop new materials and processes that are more environmentally friendly.

What challenges have you faced in your business journey? Do you think luck or hard work is more important?
For years, I approached my assessments, reviews, and pitches with great bluntness. I would tell my investors and business partners plainly, “This is how it is — period.” However, I have since learned that the world is more complex than that. We need to deliver things in a way that doesn’t cause unnecessary stress but helps to set confidence and expectations. That being said, I believe that hard work is a major key to success. It’s not just about working hard though; it’s about working smart. You have to be efficient and utilize your time in the best way possible.

You are a strong advocate of companies investing in the Metaverse. How can enterprises increase their chances of success in the Metaverse and position themselves as leaders in this emerging market?

The Metaverse is a virtual world that is created by the convergence of multiple online communities and 3D environments. It is a natural extension of the internet and will eventually become the dominant platform for all human activity. Enterprises need to start investing in the Metaverse now if they want to be leaders in this emerging market. There are a number of ways in which they can do this. Firstly, they need to create a presence in the Metaverse and start experimenting with different applications, such as virtual reality, augmented reality, and 3D commerce. Secondly, they need to build a strong team of experts who are knowledgeable about the Metaverse and the technology behind it. Finally, they need to create partnerships with other companies that are active in the Metaverse. These partnerships will be essential for driving innovation and growth in the Metaverse.

Web3 technologies are necessary for enterprises to stay ahead of the curve. How can they use Web3 to gain a competitive edge?

Web3 technologies are the next generation of internet technologies that are based on the principles of decentralization, trustlessness, and security. They have the potential to radically change the way in which enterprises operate and give them a competitive edge. Enterprises can use Web3 technologies to build decentralized applications (DApps) that are more secure and efficient than traditional centralized applications. Additionally, they can use Web3 to create new business models that are not possible with centralized systems. For example, they can use blockchain technology to create decentralized marketplaces where buyers and sellers can trade without the need for a central authority. This will allow them to cut out the middleman and save on costs.

Tell us something about your passion and what drives your passion?   

The impact of digital innovation and artificial intelligence on society, business, and government is a passion of mine. I strongly believe that these technologies can be used to improve our world and make it a better place for all. Specifically, I am passionate about using AI for good, and have been involved in several initiatives to use AI for social good. I am also passionate about digital government, and feel that digital technologies can help government to be more efficient, effective, and responsive to the needs of citizens.

Do you believe in being in the rat race or being a tiger?

No more rat race. I literally wake up every day with a smile on my face. I find that doing what I want and being in control of my own life makes me a lot happier. Imagine deciding to go anywhere and doing whatever you want as long as you create value. Who wants to shlepp when you could enjoy life to the fullest. I figured out that art of living a fulfilling life is trying things that are way outside of their comfort zone and enjoying it.

I believe that it is important to be a tiger, not a rat. I think that too often, people get caught up in the rat race and forget what is really important in life. Being a tiger means being focused and driven, and always striving to be the best that you can be. It also means being aware of the bigger picture and making sure that your actions are in line with your values and goals. Being a rat means being afraid to take risks, and always playing it safe. It also means being focused on the wrong things, like money and status, instead of what really matters in life.

What has been your inspiration? Tell us about your desires and goal.

Being the son of a sewing machine mechanic who was born in a small village in Belarus, I am immensely proud of my dad and everything he has accomplished. He is my inspiration because he always fought for what he believed in and never gave up on his dreams. Thanks to him, I have been able to experience the benefits of the American dream. I hope to continue his legacy by inspiring others to never give up on their dreams and to always fight for what they believe in.

Mention your achievements in professional and personal lives; state the awards & accolades received to date that define your accomplishments.

I was recently named as one of the 20 Most Followed AI Influencers of 2021 by Engati, and now serve as the newly appointed Chairman of the Executive committee of AI for Good Foundation. I am also a Knowledge Partner and Co-Chair of the Steering Committee for the AI for the Planet Alliance collaboration with UNDP, UNESCO and BCG. Forbes named me as one of the Leaders to Watch in 2017, and I have received the Albert Einstein Award for Outstanding Achievement and the World Trade Leadership Award from the World Trade Centers and World Trade Center’s Association.

Tell us about the network of professionals and partners you have created. Can you shed some light on a few initiatives or techniques you are incorporating?

Currently, I am Co-Chair of the Steering Committee for the AI for the Planet Alliance, Chair of the Executive Committee for the AI for Good Foundation – in collaboration with UNDP, UNESCO and BCG as a Knowledge Partner based in Paris, as well as Senior Advisor to Boston Consulting Group and BCG Gamma. Through these various positions, I have been able to create a strong network of professionals and partners who are all working towards using AI for good – meaning creating social and economic value while also protecting our environment. We are working towards developing a set of best practices for AI applications in the environmental sector, creating an online platform that will allow businesses and organizations to find AI solutions for climate change, working with businesses and organizations to develop AI pilots that focus on climate change, conducting research on the impact of AI on the environment and climate change, and educating the public about AI and its potential to help address climate change.

What are the different verticals that you have worked with so far? How do you stay abreast of the periodic technological and industry changes in a constantly evolving world?

I have worked with a wide range of businesses and organizations across a variety of industries, including the telecommunications, automotive, aerospace, defense, healthcare, banking, and insurance sectors. I have also worked with governments and NGOs. I stay abreast of the latest industry changes by attending conferences and events, reading industry publications, and following thought leaders on social media. In addition, I am a member of several professional organizations, such as the World Economic Forum, the G20 and B20, GFCC, US Council on Competitiveness, which enable me to stay up-to-date on the latest industry trends.

As a successful business leader, what would your advice be to youngsters aspiring to become business leaders and entrepreneurs in the future?

My advice to the younger generation that is aspiring to become business leaders and entrepreneurs in the future is to always be learning. Technology is changing at an exponential rate and it is important to stay up-to-date on the latest trends. Additionally, it is important to be adaptable and agile in order to succeed in today’s rapidly changing world. Finally, it is important to have a strong network of professionals and partners who can offer advice and support.

What projects or goals are you working on or leading currently?

I am currently working on a number of initiatives, including the AI for the Planet Alliance and the AI for Good Foundation. I am also working on a book on Preparing for a Human Centric Digitally Driven Future, which focuses on the importance of people and values in the digital age.

Any other thoughts that you would like to share with our readers?

I recently had an interview with CDO magazine, in which I suggested several key action items for businesses. First of all, companies must shift from automation of their existing processes to digitizing their operations. In addition, companies shouldn’t just adopt new technologies – they need to focus on the customer experience via personalization, mobile interactions, and data-driven marketing. Lastly, companies should invest into sensor tech and the Internet of Things to obtain real-time insights.

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