Steve Case: Don’t let the United States turn into Detroit


Aspen Institute president Walter Isaacson interviews Steve Case, left. (Matt McFarland/The Washington Post)

AOL co-founder Steve Case stressed the need for the United States to remain innovative Tuesday at an event hosted by the Aspen Institute in Washington.

“We kind of led on the digital information revolution. We need to lead in the next revolution, otherwise our economy will start stagnating and we’ll never be able to solve some of the fiscal problems,” Case said.

He spoke with optimism about American entrepreneurship and the economy, provided policy on immigration and innovation remains forward thinking. He cited Detroit as a warning of the dangers of complacency.

“A half century ago Detroit was the most innovative, entrepreneurial center in the country, arguably the world, because at the time the most innovative technology was the car,” Case said. “… You don’t want to get cocky or complacent like Detroit did and think you can rest on your laurels. You constantly have to reinvent yourself.”

He highlighted health care and education as areas ripe for a potential second Internet revolution in the next 25 years.

“We don’t all learn the same way. Different people process information in different kind of ways, but it’s pretty much a rote one-size-fits-all approach to learning,” Case said at the Innovation Economy, which was hosted at Carnegie Library.

Matt McFarland is the editor of Innovations. He's always looking for the next big thing. You can find him on Twitter and Facebook.

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