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Guest Thinkers

The Nantucket Project: Big Ideas on a Small Island

What’s the Big Idea?

Larry Summers, Eric Schmidt, Skip Gates, Dean Kamen, Rahm Emanuel, Craig Venter and many other thought-leaders and innovators will convene on Nantucket this Fall. Those are some very big names on a small island, and if it all sounds rather exclusive, well, it is.

Nantucket, Massachusetts has long been a laboratory for innovative ideas, ever since the island emerged as America’s leading whaling port in the eighteenth century. In fact, this island–a fragile outpost located 26 miles off the coast of Cape Cod–was so technologically advanced that it caused the British statesman Edmund Burke to remark how it had “exceeded the collective might of all of Europe.”

What’s the Significance?

The history of Nantucket, with its many booms and busts, and eventual re-invention as a destination for tourism, is analogous to the current set of challenges and opportunities facing America and our world. It is no coincide, then, that Nantucket is the site of a new thought-leadership event called The Nantucket Project, to be held on the island from September 30 to October 2.

The intimate gathering, which was brought to life by an influential founding circle that includes Wendy Schmidt, Robert and Jennifer Diamond, Tom and Emily Scott, Tim and Alicia Cannon Mullen, Steve and Jill Karp, Tom Bresette and Kate Brosnan, is built around the idea of “Rethink” as its inaugural theme.

The cross-disciplinary group of participants, which features hedge fund managers, CEOs, artists, filmmakers, poets and writers–all share one thing in common, according to Nantucket Project co-founder Tom Scott: they are “on the cutting edge of their field at the moment.”

(Below) Rahm Emanuel will be joining a high-profile group of presenters at The Nantucket Project from September 30 – October 2, 2011.


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