What to Expect at the 2013 NASTD Conference

Event promises to inspire tech leaders to take on the future.

When state and local technology leaders gather in Charleston, S.C., for the 36th annual National Association of State and Technology Directors (NASTD) Conference and Technology Showcase, infrastructure will be top of mind. This year’s theme, “Climbing into the Clouds: Transforming Technology Services for Tomorrow,” will explore how state and local governments can prepare their infrastructures for the next generation of employees and citizens.

What Is “Combinatorial Innovation”?

Mike Liebhold, a distinguished fellow at the nonprofit Institute for the Future, will kick off the conference. Liebhold will address “combinatorial innovation,” a term coined by economist Hal Varian. Varian explains the concept on McKinsey & Company’s site:

We’re in the middle of a period that I refer to as a period of “combinatorial innovation.” So if you look historically, you’ll find periods in history where there would be the availability of a different component parts that innovators could combine or recombine to create new inventions. In the 1800s, it was interchangeable parts. In 1920, it was electronics. In the 1970s, it was integrated circuits.

Now what we see is a period where you have Internet components, where you have software, protocols, languages, and capabilities to combine these component parts in ways that create totally new innovations.

Leibhold will explore how this affects local governments and what leaders can do to address the coming change. Follow him on Twitter for updates throughout the show.

Why Governments Must RESPECT Their Employees

Author, human resources consultant and Yale Ph.D. graduate Paul Marciano will address employee motivation. This will be key as cloud services like software, infrastructure and platform as a service shift IT and require employees to take on new roles. He will use his RESPECT model as a guide for this talk:

Recognition: Acknowledging employees’ contributions

Empowerment: Providing employees with the resources needed to be successful

Supportive Feedback: Giving ongoing performance feedback

Partnering: Fostering a collaborative working environment

Expectation Setting: Establishing clear performance goals and holding employees accountable

Consideration: Demonstrating thoughtfulness, empathy, and kindness

Trust: Demonstrating faith and belief in their employees’ skills, abilities, and decisions

For more information, follow Marciano on Twitter.

Reaching New Heights

Ed Viesturs is the only American and sixth person ever to ascend all fourteen of the world’s 8,000-meter peaks without the help of supplemental oxygen. In spite of his mountaineering accomplishments, why would he be invited to participate in a conference for government technology leaders?

Viesturs will explain how “teamwork, goal setting, leadership and perseverance” led to his success and explore how governments can mimic the model. His motto, “Reaching the summit is optional, getting down is mandatory,” will serve as a basis for his talk, which is sure to be inspirational.

Learn more about the event, the agenda and the speakers on the official NASTD website.

Credit: NASTD
Aug 26 2013