Startups Increasingly Tackling Policy and Social Issues

July 18, 2016 - 2 minutes read

social startups

Sidewalk labs (an Alphabet subsidiary) is proposing to build Columbus, Ohio’s public transportation from scratch. Y Combinator is researching what it’ll take to build a city from a blank slate. Artificial islands, far from futurist fantasies, are very real undertakings being pursued by billionaires of the tech industry to create “havens” for innovation. What3Words is updating Mongolia’s postal service database — in other words, updating the residence data infrastructure for an entire country.

It’s no wonder that iPhone app developers are looking slightly higher than Angry Birds II as they set their aspirations and goals for the coming year. The pressure to literally “change the world” has never been greater. And again and again, scrappy startups and small teams of mobile app developers are showing that it is possible to fix major societal problems with the combination of good tech and good ideas.

Tech journalists are predicting that the mobile-ization of key areas like infrastructure and transportation won’t be without growing pains. Startups are famously fast to fail, which can create serious problems for end users. In the case of the Mongolia Postal Service’s partnership with What3Words, the result of a closure could mean the difference between a functional mail system — a difference with sizable economic consequences, if it came to pass.

As mobile app developers and technologists enter “new” verticals like FinTech and healthcare, it’s critically important that they safeguard data and prepare plan B systems for users who come to rely on a private startup for important needs. When San Francisco mobile app developers and governments can work closely on providing goods and services to the public, there are guaranteed to be incredible savings on time and labor.

If the past five years were the era of the sharing economy, the next five years may well be the era of the sharing governance. From infrastructure to social organization, tech has much to offer outside traditional “techie” arenas like social networks. For the brave few mobile app developers who venture into the unknown, only two things are assured: spectacular failures and world-changing successes.

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,