Feature Story

Cisco in the house – Clubhouse

by Sophia Lin

Cisco executives join Clubhouse

Cisco executives join Clubhouse to share their insights on top-of-mind topics including the digital divide and hybrid work.

Clubhouse. What is it? This emerging social/audio app offers entrepreneurs and Silicon Valley influencers a space for casual (and deep!) conversations on a wide range of pressing topics. Recently, our own Cisco leaders took the stage to reflect on some of the key changes that have arisen during the pandemic.   

Cisco SVP & GM of Security and Collaboration Jeetu Patel and SVP & Group Chief Information Officer Jacqui Guichelaar joined tech influencer Jeremiah Owyang and others to answer the burning question — sweats or suits for the future of hybrid work? Many opted for sweats, considering that few people even remember how to dress for an office.  But in all seriousness, these tech experts acknowledged that the future of work is neither all office nor all remote, but a hybrid of both. Patel sees this as an opportunity for collaboration to help level the playing field for all, since geography still creates an unfair advantage for billions of workers around the world. The shift to a hybrid work model will begin to dissolve those barriers.  From a CIO perspective, Guichelaar observed that in mere months, the pandemic — and digital technologies — upended decades of centralized organizational models. Today, companies are increasingly decentralized – people are no longer tied to offices or campuses but just as likely to work from an apartment, a café, or a mountain cabin. This fast pivot has left many CIOs contending with increased complexity and security fears as they ponder how to tie it all back together.   

What else might we see in a hybrid workplace? Listen to the full session.

 

In another key conversation, Owyang met with SVP/GM of Cisco’s Mass-Scale Infrastructure Group Jonathan Davidson and SVP of Corporate Affairs Tae Yoo to discuss the critical need to close the digital divide.  Across the planet, there are more than 3.8 billion unconnected and underserved, who are effectively cut off from the gobal economy. But as Yoo stated internet access is no longer a luxury — it is a basic of need like food, water, and air, and the United Nations has declared it a human right.  Aside from the moral imperative, connectivity is also an economic driver. Davidson said that if connectivity were to lift even 500 million people out of poverty (which could be possible if we connect the next billion people), it would add $6.7 trillion to the digital economy. But as Davidson was quick to add, it won't be possible to connect everyone without lowering the costs of digital infrastructure So, it’s critical to make it easier and cheaper for locally or nationally owned service providers to expand their reach into underserved communities. Davidson believes that if we dramatically lower costs through innovation and openness, we can create a more equitable future for all.

What does creating a more inclusive future look like? Listen to the full session.

 
 

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