Infrastructure: Past, Present, and Future

September 23, 2021
7:30 p.m.–9:00 p.m. ET

From roads and highways, to railways and airports, and now the internet and more, infrastructure has supported American development and progress. Can we learn from history, assess current needs, understand the economics, and have a vision for our future? Dean Baker, Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Laurie A. Schintler, and Lee Vinsel discussed these issues. This event was organized by the Network for Responsible Public Policy.



DEAN BAKER is a senior economist and co-founder of the Center for Economic and Policy Research. He is also a visiting professor at the University of Utah. His most recent book is Rigged: How the Rules of Globalization and the Modern Economy Were Structured to Make the Rich Richer.

ROSABETH MOSS KANTER holds the Ernest L. Arbuckle Professorship at Harvard Business School, specializing in strategy, innovation, and leadership for change. Her strategic and practical insights guide leaders worldwide through teaching, writing, and direct consultation to major corporations, governments, and start-up ventures. She co-founded the Harvard University-wide Advanced Leadership Initiative, guiding its planning from 2005 to its launch in 2008, and serving as Founding Chair and Director from 2008-2018 as it became a growing international model for a new stage of higher education, preparing successful top leaders to apply their skills to national and global challenges. Author or co-author of 20 books, her latest book, Think Outside the Building: How Advanced Leaders Can Change the World One Smart Innovation at a Time, has won a number of accolades>.

LAURIE A. SCHINTLER is an Associate Professor in the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University, where she also serves as Director of Data and Technology Research Initiatives in the Center for Regional Analysis. Her research and teaching interests include big data, emerging technology, ethics, public policy, critical infrastructure, transportation, and regional science. In these areas, she has several peer-reviewed articles, book chapters, and technical reports, including the following edited volumes: New Advances in Transportation and Telecommunications Modeling: Cross-Atlantic Perspectives, Big Data for Regional Science, and the Encyclopedia of Big Data. She is a co-recipient of a patent for “System and method for analyzing the structure of logical networks” (USPTO: 20100306372, July 2010) and co-founded the geo-spatial intelligence company Fortiusone (Geoiq). Dr. Schintler received her Ph.D. in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign.

LEE VINSEL is an associate professor of Science, Technology, and Society at Virginia Tech and a co-founder of The Maintainers, a global, interdisciplinary research network focused on maintenance, repair, infrastructure, and the mundane work that keeps our world going. He is the author of Moving Violations, a history of automobile regulation in the United States, and co-author with Andy Russell of The Innovation Delusion: How Our Obsession with the New Has Disrupted the Work that Matters Most. His work has appeared or been covered in the New York Times, Guardian, Atlantic, Le Monde, and many other outlets around the world.


PETER COY is an economics writer for the New York Times Opinion section. He moved to the Times in July 2021 after nearly 32 years at BusinessWeek and Bloomberg Businessweek.


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