Mark Weber | @markrweber
Mark Weber (@markrweber) is a researcher at the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab. His expertise is connecting dots across disciplines to bridge academic research with compelling real-world applications. Working for IBM Research, Mark is focused on developing capabilities in emergent technologies such as Artificial Intelligence and blockchain technology, focused on improving our financial and economic systems for integral human flourishing. Mark cut his teeth at the MIT Media Lab working at the Digital Currency Initiative, where he led the development of the b_verify protocol for publicly verifiable records, focused on warehouse receipts in agricultural supply chains as an experimental use case (see dci.mit.edu/b-verify). Papers and open-source code forthcoming this summer. He also earned an MBA in finance from MIT Sloan, where he was a Fellow at the Legatum Center for Entrepreneurship & Development. Prior to MIT, produced documentary films on political economy and development, most notably a film called Poverty, Inc., winner of over 50 film festival honors and the $100,000 Templeton Freedom Award (available on Netflix and other platforms via www.povertyinc.org). As a public speaker, Mark enjoys opportunities to share his research and learn from others. He has delivered talks at over 100 top universities, organizations, and events around the world. Mark owes a debt of gratitude to his classical “Great Books” education from the University of Notre Dame. His recreational joys include trail running, reading, and cooking with his wife.
Finance and society
Finance isn't just the realm of Wall Street. It's a fundamental aspect of everyday life for everyday people, from households and small-medium business to governments and multinational organizations. It's an auto-worker in Michigan remitting money to his family in Tunisia. It's a farmer in Mexico pledging his corn as collateral for a loan so he can pay 100 employees. It's the French government ensuring the sustainability of its pension programs. It's an economist evaluating the game theoretic consequences of a proposed trade policy on the price of bread in the grocery store. Now more than ever, we need an integrated worldview that prompts us to consider not only what can we do, but what should we do to cultivate a robust, resilient, and inclusive global economy.