I’ll be attending this week here in Berlin called “Future of Innovation Laboratories and Urban Innovation Strategies.” The idea is to find solutions to the world's most pressing urban problems. Will it succeed? Certainly not definitively, but hopefully I'll gain some interesting insight as to how policymakers are thinking about some of the most pressing issues of the 21st century.
One of the aspects that makes Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley – ok, maybe THE aspect that makes it what it is, is the huge amount of venture capital that entrepreneurs have access to. In the second quarter of 2014 – the second quarter – venture capital firms invested $7.1 billion in SV startups. Say what you will about possible bubbles, and overheated investment climates, but that number is what makes Silicon Valley the tech world’s equivalent of the Amazon Jungle: a lush, fertile environment that supports an almost unlimited number of creatures.
Berlin’s growing startup scene does not feature quite as much money.
I spent most of Saturday inside an empty swimming pool. Why? To figure out why Berlin's startup scene has yet to produce a company valued at one billion euros.