674656Cisco's Chambers: "Think Like Your Children"

June 20, 2012 – Jerusalem, Israel – Cisco Chairman John Chambers, Publicis Chairman Maurice Levy, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski, and Stephane Richard, Chairman and CEO of France Telecom Group, discussed how new media technology is shaping society, education, politics, economics and entertainment in a panel entitled, ‘What's New in New Media,” during the Israeli Presidential Conference.

The panelists discussed the power of new media, and how global citizens, not companies, are responsible for taking technology to new heights.

"We are entering into an era of change,” said Levy, who has spoken at each of the four Facing Tomorrow conferences. “What inventors are inventing is going beyond even their own imagination. The people, not the inventors, are owning technologies, and, through them, changing the world."

The conversation then led to a discussion about the potential digital economy “bubble,” with several high-profile companies enjoying price-earnings multiples in the hundreds.

"We should – all of us – really wonder if we do not see a new bubble in the digital economy," warned Richard, whose company – which has more than 200 million customers – is seen by many as undervalued. "The way the financial world is looking at digital is clearly a question - even some of the most famous names and brands."

Other panelists responded by saying that the undervaluing of new innovative companies would compensate for the overvaluation of a few major industry leaders. Yet, all agreed that the key for the future will be to constantly seek new ways of advancing and to never remain content with the status quo.

"If you want to know where new media is going, think like your children," said Chambers, focusing on the imagination necessary for success. "The companies that do not change, regardless of how strong their brand is today, will get left behind. We need to be ready to change."

At the conclusion of the panel, Chambers and Israeli President Shimon Peres announced an expansion of their joint Ma’antech initiative, adding 12,000 jobs to the Israeli hi-tech sector. Ma’antech aims to boost the recruitment of Arab candidates to Israel's leading high tech companies.

Facing Tomorrow 2012, the fourth annual conference under the auspices of the President of the State of Israel, Mr. Shimon Peres, is taking place in Jerusalem from June 19-21, 2012, at Jerusalem’s International Convention Center. The conference is organized in partnership with Hebrew University.


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About Facing Tomorrow 2012

The Fourth Israel Presidential Conference 'Facing Tomorrow' will be held from June 19-21, 2012. The first presidential conference took place in May 2008, one week after Israel celebrated its 60th year of independence, and on the basis of its success became an annual event. Attended by more than 5,000 people from around the world, and dedicated to designing a better tomorrow, the conference is centered around discussions, panels and plenary sessions aimed at answering one question: how can we foster a better tomorrow for the international community, Israel and the Jewish world. For more information, please visit www.presidentconf.org.il.