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Scientific American, March 24, 2011
New conference, Compass Summit, convenes social innovation and technology thought leaders

NEW YORK, March 24, 2011 — The founders of a newly formed social innovation endeavor, Compass Summit, today announced the launch of an invitation-only summit where key influencers will be tasked to take a deep and interdisciplinary look at science, technological, and social innovation and its ramifications on society. The conference will run from October 24-26, 2011 at the Terranea Resort near Los Angeles.

As part of the team that produced last year's Techonomy conference, Compass hosts have joined with outside partners, Scientific American, Fenton, and 100 People Foundation. Compass Summit will assemble a group of influential thinkers from a variety of disciplines to address how human ingenuity and invention can address mass urbanization, climate change, and other vital challenges.

The Compass Summit draws on the thinking of advisors Bill Joy, Brook Byers, Stewart Brand, physicist Lisa Randall, and other business, technology, and scientific leaders.

"Mankind's ingenuity and overwhelming desire to invent will unleash the power and promise of 21st-century technologies," said Bill Joy, Co-founder of Sun Microsystems and a partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. "Foreseeable advances in information technology and the sciences give us hope that we will meet the challenges of our time. The Compass Summit is committed to celebrating and exploring collaboration across disciplines, encouraging positive and sustainable change."

"The exploration of what's new and at the forefront of science, technology and innovation has been central to Scientific American's mission since we were founded in 1845," said Bruce Brandfon, Scientific American Vice President and Publisher. "We are excited to participate in the Compass Summit and look forward to all the dynamic discussions that will take place at the conference and beyond."

About the Compass Summit
The summit will emphasize how organizations, companies, and institutions can accelerate the process of identifying technologies to scale up for the market, and on the interplay of technology and jobs. Technology and social innovation are at the core of the program, reflecting the belief that human inventiveness is an inexhaustible resource, and that we have the responsibility to exploit it to solve great problems. Compass also promotes 'peripheral awareness' of the diversity of scientific, technological, business and philanthropic disciplines, because crossover ideas are the seeds of future transformative innovations.

The conference is created by four of the founders of Techonomy in an effort to expand and evolve the original program that debuted in Lake Tahoe in August of 2010. The team includes: Brent Schlender and Peter Petre continue to serve as the editorial voices for the conference; Carolyn Jones is the creative director; Michael Christman is the executive producer.

Strategic Partners
Scientific American is the media partner and member of the corporate council.

Fenton is the strategic communications/digital media partner, helping create a robust and engaging conversation.

100 People Foundation is working with Compass to develop educational materials to be distributed for use in schools around the globe.

To learn more, please visit For sponsorship information, please contact Michael Christman at

About Scientific American

Founded in 1845, Scientific American is the oldest continuously published magazine in the US and the leading authoritative publication for science and technology in the general media. Together with and 14 local language editions around the world it reaches more than nine million readers. Other titles include Scientific American Mind and Spektrum der Wissenschaft in Germany. Scientific American is published by Springer Nature, a leading global research, educational and professional publisher, home to an array of respected and trusted brands providing quality content through a range of innovative products and services. Springer Nature was formed in 2015 through the merger of Nature Publishing Group, Palgrave Macmillan, Macmillan Education and Springer Science+Business Media.

For more information contact:
  • Susan McPherson
  • Fenton
  • TEL: (212) 584-5000
  • EMAIL:
  • Rachel Scheer
  • Head of Communications, USA, Springer Nature
  • TEL: (212) 451-8569
  • EMAIL:
  • Cathy Cook
  • Compass Summit
  • TEL: (415) 309-6748
  • EMAIL:

Press Inquiries

Interview requests, corporate and trade press:
  • Rachel Scheer
  • Head of Communications, USA, Springer Nature
  • New York, NY
  • Phone (212) 451-8569
  • Contact by Email
  • Sarah Hausman
  • Communications and Press Officer, Nature Research
  • New York
  • Phone (212)-726-9378
  • Contact by Email
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