Charles Leadbeater is a world-renowned innovation expert whose work focuses on how to be human in an increasingly technological, unequal world, overshadowed by climate change.
He is the author of several internationally renowned books. His forthcoming books explore how to be human in an increasingly technological, unequal world, overshadowed by climate change. The Analogue Innovator, released in 2018, looks at why as digital innovation accelerates we are so drawn to older forms of craftwork, culture and technology as a counterbalance. Finding the right combination of the old and the new, the human and the technological will be critical to how we live and work well. In Breakthrough Movements, Charles Leadbeater unpicks the DNA of breakthroughs which change life for the better for millions of people, from the creation of the modern restaurant to the invention of the contraceptive pill. Big breakthroughs come from innovation movements that combine new thinking about society with technology, organisation and culture to make it real. Leadbeater uses this anatomy of breakthrough innovation strategies to forecast which technologies will provide the biggest breakthroughs in future: from driverless cars and block chain to personalised genetic treatments and solar energy.
Charles Leadbeater has a track record for being ahead of the game. The best seller, Living on Thin Air, published in 1998, forecast the rise of the knowledge-driven, weightless economy and We-Think: mass innovation not mass production, published in 2008, forecast that the web was breeding a Pro-Am culture of collaboration across a wide range of fields. In 1997 Charles was one of the first people in the world to write about the impending rise of social entrepreneurship.
Since then he has been a social innovator in his own right as one of the founders of the influential innovation and design agency Participle and as founder chair of the Google award-winning charity Apps for Good. He is a well-known and provocative voice in debates on the future of learning arguing that education should prepare young people to be creative and collaborative problem solvers. His TED talk based on his report Learning from the Extremes, looking at social innovation in education in the slums of the developing world, has been seen more than 3 million times.
Charles Leadbeater was an award-winning journalist with the Financial Times in London and Tokyo before going on to become assistant editor at The Independent, where he got Helen Fielding to write the column that became Bridget Jones’s diary. He went on to become an advisor to Tony Blair and David Miliband when they were in government.
As a Cultural Ambassador for London Mayor Sadique Khan and an associate of the Centre for London, he has written widely on the future of London and other cities, looking in particular at how successful cities can be smart and efficient but also hospitable and humane. Charles is a life fellow of the Royal Society of the Arts, a trustee of the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and an Arsenal season ticket holder.
As a speaker, Charles Leadbeater uses his expertise and aptitude for spotting ideas ahead of time to expound on topics such as ‘cloud culture’, ‘remixing the city’ and ‘a better kind of banking’.
- + 44 (0) 20 3384 3664