The Future of Work

Joi Ito, MIT Media Lab and Reid Hoffman, LinkedIn; Greylock Partners

Reid Hoffman in conversation with Joi Ito on the next wave of innovation in the digital era, and the future of work.

Joi Ito, Director , MIT Media Lab

Joi Ito is the director of the MIT Media Lab, professor of the practice at MIT and the author, with Jeff Howe, of Whiplash: How to Survive Our Faster Future (Grand Central Publishing, 2016).

Ito is chairman of the board of PureTech Health and serves on several other boards, including those of the New York Times Company, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Knight Foundation. He is also the former chairman and CEO of Creative Commons, and a former board member of ICANN, the Open Source Initiative, Sony, and the Mozilla Foundation.

A serial entrepreneur, Ito helped start and run numerous companies, including one of the first Web companies in Japan, Digital Garage, and the first commercial Internet service provider in Japan, PSINet Japan/IIKK. He has been an early-stage investor in many companies, including Formlabs, Flickr, Kickstarter, littleBits, and Twitter.

He has received numerous awards, including the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Oxford Internet Institute and the Golden Plate Award from the Academy of Achievement, and he was inducted into the SXSW Interactive Festival Hall of Fame in 2014. He has also been awarded honorary doctorates from the New School and Tufts University and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Ito will be a visiting professor of the practice at the Harvard Law School from July 1, 2017, through June 30, 2020.

Reid Hoffman, Cofounder; Partner, LinkedIn; Greylock Partners

Reid Hoffman cofounded LinkedIn, the world’s largest professional networking service, in 2003. LinkedIn is thriving with more than 450 million members around the world and a diversified revenue model that includes subscriptions, advertising, and software licensing. He led LinkedIn through its first four years and to profitability as chief executive officer. He previously served as executive vice president at PayPal, where he was also a founding board member.

Reid joined Greylock Partners in 2009. He focuses on building products that can reach hundreds of millions of participants and businesses that have network effects. He currently serves on the boards of Airbnb, Edmodo, Convoy, Blockstream, and a few early-stage companies still in stealth mode. In addition, he is a board member of a number of not-for-profit organizations, including Kiva, Mozilla Corporation, Endeavor, and CZI Biohub. Prior to joining Greylock, he was an angel investor in many influential Internet companies, including Facebook, Flickr,, and Zynga.

Reid is the coauthor of two New York Times best-selling books: The Start-up of You and The Alliance. His next book is focused on “blitzscaling,” based on his Stanford course of the same name.

Reid earned a master’s degree in philosophy from the University of Oxford, where he was a Marshall Scholar, and a bachelor’s degree with distinction in symbolic systems from Stanford University. In 2010 he was the recipient of an SD Forum Visionary Award and named a Henry Crown Fellow by the Aspen Institute. In 2012, he was honored with the Martin Luther King Center’s Salute to Greatness Award. Also in 2012, he received the David Packard Medal of Achievement from TechAmerica and an honorary doctor of law degree from Babson University.


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