Peter Diamandis Profile

Peter Diamandis has degrees in Molecular Genetics and Aerospace Engineering from MIT and an MD from Harvard Medical School. He is an expert in the field of innovation and possibly the greatest non-governmental expert on spaceflight in the world. He is chairman and CEO of the X PRIZE Foundation, famous for offering the Ansari $10 million X PRIZE for private spaceflight.

Deeply interested in innovation for the future, Diamandis is co-founder and vice-chairman of Human Longevity Inc, a company seeking ways in which to extend the healthy human lifespan. He is also co-founder and executive chairman of Singularity University, the renowned Silicon Valley institution which tracks emerging and developing technologies and proposes ways in which they can benefit humanity.

Diamandis is co-founder and co-chairman of Planetary Resources that has a mission to develop spacecraft capable of mining precious materials from asteroids. Another company of which he is co-founder (and vice-chairman), Space Adventures, has arranged for private citizens to make trips to the International Space Station, the only company in the world that has achieved this. He is also co-founder and former CEO of Zero Gravity Corporation that provides customers with the experience of weightlessness on parabolic flights.

The winner of multiple awards, he was the first Heinlein Laureate, winner of the 2010 Economist “No Boundaries” Innovator of the Year Award, the 2007 Arthur C. Clarke Award, the 2006 Lindbergh Award, the 2006 Neil Armstrong Award and, when in the 8th grade, he took first place in the Estes rocket design contest.

His book Abundance–The Future is Better Than You Think was a #1 bestseller on Amazon and reached #2 in the New York Times bestseller list. A passionate advocate of greater access to space for humanity, he lives by his personal credo: “The best way to predict the future is to create it yourself.”

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    Dr. Peter Diamandis was recently named by Fortune Magazine as one of the World’s 50 Greatest Leaders.

    He is the Founder and Executive Chairman of the XPRIZE Foundation which leads the world in designing and operating large-scale incentive competitions.

    Diamandis is also the Co-Founder and Vice-Chairman of Human Longevity Inc. (HLI), a genomics and cell therapy-based company focused on extending the healthy human lifespan.

    He is also the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Singularity University, a graduate-level Silicon Valley institution that counsels the world’s leaders on exponentially growing technologies.

    In the field of commercial space, Diamandis is Co-Founder and Co-Chairman of Planetary Resources, a company designing spacecraft to enable the detection and prospecting of asteroid for fuels and precious materials. He is the also Co-Founder of Space Adventures and Zero Gravity Corporation.

    Diamandis is a New York Times Bestselling author of two books: Abundance – The Future Is Better Than You Think and BOLD – How to Go Big, Create Wealth and Impact the World.

    He earned degrees in Molecular Genetics and Aerospace Engineering from the MIT, and holds an M.D. from Harvard Medical School.

    His motto is, “The best way to predict the future is to create it yourself.”

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Peter Diamandis's Speech Descriptions

Peter Diamandis brings his knowledge of innovation to a series of fascinating and inspirational addresses. Taking the lessons learned from the success of the Ansari X PRIZE for private spaceflight, he explains how you can incentivize breakthroughs; he illustrates that if you do not disrupt your own business model it will be disrupted by those who replace you.

Peter has brought his exhaustive research to analysis of the future of humankind and presents a contrarian view that with correct use of new technologies we can enter a new age of abundance where every human being is well catered for.

As the co-founder and executive chairman of Singularity University, the world leader in the study of exponentially growing technologies, Peter is uniquely placed to explore the trends that will dominate the future. He demonstrates the way in which capital, either financial or human, is no longer necessary as a driver of innovation and explains that however large a firm is it is doomed to fail unless it innovates and develops.

Topic 1: Creating a Culture of Innovation & Breakthroughs
Diamandis is a dynamic inspirational speaker—described by many as “the best in the industry.” He delivers real value to his audience by showing them how to drive breakthrough thinking and innovation within their company that offer clear, measurable and objective results.

Based on the success of the Ansari X PRIZE (which stimulated the creation of a billion-dollar private spaceflight industry) and the success of additional X PRIZEs in Life Sciences, Energy, Environment and Exploration, Diamandis explains how to incentivize breakthroughs in your company and industry. Diamandis explains how traditional thinking, risk aversion and incrementalism will cause the demise of companies unable to cope with the coming decades of disruptive innovation.

Through concrete examples and lessons, Diamandis addresses two options:

    • Internal: How to create a culture of innovation within your company;
    • External: How to incentivize the outside world to help you solve your biggest problems;

Diamandis explains how the rapid growth of key exponential technologies (Nano, Info, Bio) are empowering individuals and small companies to do what only governments were able to achieve only a few decades ago. Such technologies will drive a period of significant disruption and/or opportunity depending on the company’s mindset. Diamandis’ ultimate message is that companies cannot remain stagnant. They must evolve or they will die. You are either disrupting your own business model or will be disrupted by others.

Topic 2: The Coming Age of Abundance—Understanding Humanity’s Future
Diamandis is the New York Times bestselling author of ABUNDANCE – The Future Is Better Than You Think (#1 on Amazon, #2 on New York Times, Simon & Schuster, Feb’12), in which he lays out how we will soon be able to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp. This bold, contrarian view, backed up by exhaustive research, introduces our near-term future, where exponentially growing technologies and three other powerful forces are conspiring to better the lives of billions. An antidote to pessimism by tech entrepreneur-turned-philanthropist Peter H. Diamandis.

Since the dawn of humanity, a privileged few have lived in stark contrast to the hardscrabble majority. Conventional wisdom says this gap cannot be closed. But it is closing—fast. The authors document how four forces—exponential technologies, the DIY innovator, the Technophilanthropist, and the Rising Billion—are conspiring to solve our biggest problems. Abundance establishes hard targets for change and lays out a strategic roadmap for governments, industry and entrepreneurs, giving us plenty of reason for optimism.

In his keynote address, Diamandis examines human need by category—water, food, energy, healthcare, education, communication and freedom—and addresses how a range of powerful technologies such as synthetic biology, embedded networks and cloud computing, AI and robotics, biotechnology and medicine are transforming what was once scarce into something abundant.

Providing abundance is humanity’s grandest challenge—this is a keynote about how we rise to meet it.

Topic 3: Exponential Technologies Causing Disruptive Innovation
Diamandis is the co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Singularity University (SU), the leading institution for the study of exponentially growing technologies. SU was founded with the support of Google, Autodesk, Genetech, Nokia, Cisco and NASA and is located in Silicon Valley.

From his perspective of Executive Chairman, Diamandis provides passionate, insightful and extremely useful keynotes on the impact of the following exponentially growing technologies:

    • Artificial Intelligence
    • Computational Systems
    • Digital Manufacturing/3D printing
    • Synthetic Biology/Bioinformatics
    • Digital Medicine
    • Robotics
    • Network Systems
    • Nanomaterials

Diamandis discusses how breakthroughs in these areas will transform products, companies, industries and even society over the next 20 years. He provides key insights on how human society has transformed from “Local & Linear” to one that is now “Global & Exponential,” and how this change is accelerating disruptive stress or disruptive opportunity depending on the company’s point of view. These technologies are also leading to the greatest epoch of wealth creation ever, where new billion-dollar startups are coming out of seemingly nowhere at the same time that 50- and 100-year-old, billion-dollar companies are going out of business.

Diamandis also discusses the explosion of data that is transforming how companies operate and how to tap into big data with a brand new set of exponential “organization tools” that allow companies to make 100-fold improvements in their R&D strategies.

Topic 4: Transforming Your Company from “Linear” to “Exponential”
Competition for many of America’s Fortune 500 companies is no longer coming from China and India. Today it’s coming from two guys in a garage with a startup leveraging exponentially growing technologies. YouTube went from a startup on Chad Hurley’s personal credit cards to being purchased by Google for $1.4 billion in less than 18 months. Groupon leaped from conception to $6 billion in value in less than two years.

At the same time that billion-dollar startups are materializing—seemingly out of nowhere—hundred-year-old industry cornerstone companies are crumbling. In 1996, Kodak had a market cap of $28 billion with 140,000 employees. In 2012, it went bankrupt. That same year, another company in the photography business called Instagram was purchased by Facebook for $1 billion. The company, which had been founded only a year earlier, had just 13 employees.

The difference between Kodak and Instagram is the difference between a Linear and an Exponential organization, the subject of this keynote.

For most of recorded history, a community’s productivity was a function of its human power—humans to hunt, to gather and to build. Double the number of people gathering crops and you double your output. Next, humanity domesticated beasts of burden like the ox and the horse, and output increased. But still the equation was linear. Double the beasts, double the output. As the corporation came into existence and the industrial age dawned, for the first time output took a huge leap. Now a single individual could operate machinery doing the work of 10 horses or 100 laborers. With this increased output came prosperity for many and an increase in the standard for living.

The 20th century witnessed a doubling of the human lifespan and a tripling of inflation-adjusted per capita for every nation on Earth. During this phase of human productivity, the limiting resource of growth went from the number of bodies (human or animal) to the number of machines and the capital expense deployed. Doubling the number of factories meant twice the output. Companies grew larger and larger, spanning the globe and dominating sectors. With size came increased probability of reach, domination and ultimately success. But such growth took time and large capital investments. None of this was cheap, and the complexity of large-scale hiring efforts and the difficulties of designing, building and delivering new equipment meant that implementation timelines were measured in the better part of a decade. On more than one occasion, CEOs and boards of directors found themselves “betting the company” on a new direction, making huge capital expense investments measured in hundreds of millions or billions of dollars. Pharmaceutical companies, aerospace companies, automotive companies and energy companies routinely found themselves making investments whose returns might not be known for nearly a decade.

But exponential growth and exponential organizations are different. Rather than use armies of people or large physical plants, Exponential Organizations focus on utilizing information technologies, taking that which was once physical in nature and dematerializing it into our lives. Physical equipment like Nikon cameras, Magellan GPS devices, libraries of books or music albums now simply become apps on our smartphone. An Exponential Organization is one whose impact (or output) is disproportionally large compared to its number of employees because of its use of networks, automation and/or its leveraging of the crowd.

What People are Saying about Seeing Peter Speak

Rating Entries

Peter Diamandis is one of the country’s great entrepreneurs and thinkers. He is one of the most popular speakers at the TED conference. I find him to be a provocative, great, entrepreneurial thinker. As one of the leading entrepreneurs around, he is going to kick off our meeting in an important way inspiring us about speed, innovation and what’s going on in the world today.”
    Jeffrey Immelt, Chairman & CEO of GE

“Peter’s keynote blew me away. I’ve been presenting for years and do it for a living, and Peter is at the top of the game. His personality shines through and is extremely authentic. He is a pretty amazing dude!”
    Carlos Dominguez, Sr. Vice President, Cisco

“Peter’s presentation is world-class. One of the best I’ve had the pleasure to watch. His passion and vision about innovation, creativity and a future of abundance is infectious. Diamandis offers a critical perspective that everyone—from CEO to innovator—needs to hear. His insights on innovation, technology and the future are a breath of fresh air, a perfect antidote to the latest depressing headlines. If you’re looking for someone to help you chart your future, Peter is the perfect choice.”
    Sir Ken Robinson, Author, Speaker, (most viewed TED Talk) and International Leader in Education & Creativity

“Peter was a sensation! I’m hearing ‘best speaker ever.’ At least four members asked me about hiring him for their own board meetings. He could not have been more perfect for this strategic planning session.”
    Nancy DePaolo, University HealthSystem Consortium

“We had the pleasure of having Peter Diamandis present at our strategic planning retreat with the leaders of our member academic medical centers. The depth of his understanding of how technology is transforming our industry is extraordinary. Peter’s insights sparked an exchange of new ideas that will influence how we meet the needs of academic medical centers and those they serve, now and in the future. I only wish we had the opportunity to have our CEOs spend an entire day with him!”
    Irene M. Thompson, President and CEO, UHC

“Peter gave the featured Keynote to my first All-Executive meeting in my new role as CEO and made it a huge success. Several employees came up to me later to say that he was the best speaker we’ve ever had. His presentation on innovation and exponential technologies was very thought-provoking discussion and extremely valued.”
    Jim Robo, CEO, NextEra Energy

“Peter Diamandis is arguably the world’s most visionary thinker and innovator. Through his work at X PRIZE and Singularity, he’s transformed the way industry titans, billionaires, and thought leaders look to the future and solve the world’s toughest problems. He’s a remarkably passionate leader and change-maker and, best of all, his humility and humanity remind us all that we can be too.”
    Brendon Burchard, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Millionaire Messenger and THE CHARGE

“Diamandis is one of the most passionate and dynamic speakers today. His knowledge and leadership in exponential technologies and crowdsourcing tools such as incentive prizes helps senior management teams understand how to transform linear organizations into exponential ones. If you want to energize your senior management team and give them an understanding of the future, bring Diamandis in as your keynote speaker.”
    Gavin Newsom, Lt. Governor, California

“If you ever have the chance to see Peter Diamandis speak, run don’t walk to get a seat. Awesome inspiration.”
    Jeff Berman, General Manager, NFL Digital Media

“This is the 2nd time that Peter Diamandis has been the keynote at our global executive retreat. His enthusiasm, vision and message is extremely powerful. He has motivated my company to change the way we think about the future and how we will drive innovation. In fact, we’ve committed to creating our own internal X PRIZE. He is that truly exceptional visionary who turns big ideas into action. I can’t recommend him highly enough.”
    Frank Sullivan, Chairman & CEO, RPM, Inc.

“Dr. Peter Diamandis is a rare combination of visionary, CEO, scientist, storyteller, innovator and wizard. In his passion-driven, mind-stretching presentations, he can show you—and your group—how the alchemy of innovation actually works. More than any presentation I have seen in a very long time, Diamandis delivers both inspiration and a concrete understanding of how exponentially growing technologies will transform companies and industries over the coming years. His appetite for breakthrough ideas is matched only by his remarkable life experience in manifesting them.”
    Ken Dychtwald, Ph.D., Founding CEO of Age Wave, Author of Bodymind, Age Wave, Healthy Aging, Gideon’s Dream and A New Purpose: Redefining Money, Work, Family, Retirement and Success

“Words cannot quite capture the passion and energy you created with my team and all of our guests. Your presentation was the highlight of the entire FTF event and I mean this.”
    Henri Richard, CMO & SVP, Freescale Semiconductor

“We’ve been hosting our Fortune magazine summits for over a decade and our audience of CEOs and senior executives have seen and heard most of the top business thought leaders and CEOs of our time. And over these years they’ve only given a handful of spontaneous standing ovations, one of which was for Dr. Diamandis. His presentation is one of the most inspirational yet specific; impactful yet practical presentations we’ve ever had the privilege to host. His message must be heard by everyone who hopes to participate actively in the 21st Century.”
    Verne Harnish, Chair, Fortune Summits

“Peter Diamandis’ message about the exceptional future that lies ahead resonated deeply with our entire campus community. His breadth of understanding and vast experience in the business of the future paired with his incredibly passionate and engaging style makes for an unforgettable experience.”
    Kevin M. Ross, President, Lynn University

“Dr. Diamandis’ electrifying presentation created incredible energy in the room and challenged everyone to raise their ambition and think bigger. Over the years, we’ve hosted a long list of globally visionaries at our previous events, including Sir Richard Branson, Dr. Stephen Covey, Tony Hsieh and even His Holiness the Dalai Lama — and Peter’s presentation received as much enthusiasm and awe as any of the greatest talks our audience have ever experienced. Among several globally recognized speakers who presented at our recent SimpleWealth event, Peter was named the favourite speaker (by a factor of 3) — and that’s a remarkable achievement. If you’re looking for a inspirational, thought-provoking presentation that will provide a powerful sense of optimism and action in your audience, book Peter for your event NOW. You will not regret it.”
    Greg Habstritt, Founder, SimpleWealth

“I run SANG conference and we’ve hosted speakers like Tony Robbins, Les Brown, Peter Guber and Jack Canfield and Mark Victor Hansen (Chicken Soup For the Soul), and the speech that Peter Diamandis recently gave has been the most talked about ever! Peter will raise the bar of your event to new heights and change the way people think. He has my highest endorsement.”
    Larry Benet, CEO of SANG, The Speakers and Authors Networking Group

“I’ve shared the stage with Branson and the Dalai Lama. And in my entire life, NO SPEECH has inspired me to get out and kick butt in the world like you did at SANG. Thank you for that.”
    Vishen Lakhiani, Founder & CEO, MindValley

“Never before have I seen someone provide a view of the future that is so informed by science and history, yet utterly optimistic! Diamandis clearly and entertainingly uses analogies from the past to illustrate how the major problems mankind faces today and tomorrow, will inevitably be solved through exponential technologies. Bravo!”
    Kenneth Hepburn, CEO & Founder, GIVIGIV

“Peter gives hope where others see none. Not only is his speaking style engaging and inspirational but his message is one of great importance for all of humanity. This man is doing critically important work. He is making his life and the lives of others count immeasurably.”
    Shaahin Cheyene, President, Accelerated Intelligence Inc.

Partial Client List:

PhRMA Annual CEO’s Conference
Progressive Insurance
Charles River Ventures Partner’s Mtg
Creative Companies
National Academies of Sciences
National Innovation Conference
RPM Senior Management Retreat
Abu Dhabi Media Summit
Kimpton Hotels Mngmt Retreat
Google Zeitgeist
Commonwealth Fund
Legacy Ventures
Whitehouse Incentive Prize Conf.
Paint & Coatings Association
Jeddah Economic Summit
Autodesk – Detroit Conference

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Books by Peter Diamandis:


Abundance—the Future is Better Than You Think
Dr. Peter H. Diamandis is an international pioneer in the fields of innovation, incentive competitions and commercial space.

Abundance—the Future is Better Than You Think is a new book by Dr. Peter Diamandis (Chairman and CEO of the X PRIZE Foundation) and Steven Kotler (bestselling author and science journalist), launching February 21, 2012. It is a thrilling antidote to today’s dark pessimism. The authors rely on exhaustive research and extensive interviews with top scientists, innovators, and captains of industry to explore how four emerging forces——exponential technologies, the DIY innovator, the Technophilanthropist, and the Rising Billion——are conspiring to solve our biggest problems.

Diamandis and Kotler examine the stunning impact these forces are having on categories of critical importance while establishing hard targets for change, laying out a strategic road map for governments, industry, and entrepreneurs, and giving us plenty of reason for optimism. Since the dawn of humanity, a privileged few have lived in stark contrast to the hardscrabble majority. Conventional wisdom says this gap cannot be closed. But it is closing—fast. In Abundance, space entrepreneur turned innovation pioneer Peter H. Diamandis and award-winning science writer Steven Kotler document how progress in artificial intelligence, robotics, infinite computing, ubiquitous broadband networks, digital manufacturing, nanomaterials, synthetic biology, and many other exponentially growing technologies will enable us to make greater gains in the next two decades than we have in the previous two hundred years. We will soon have the ability to meet and exceed the basic needs of every man, woman, and child on the planet. Abundance for all is within our grasp.

Breaking down human needs by category—water, food, energy, healthcare, education, freedom—Diamandis and Kotler introduce us to dozens (and dozens) of innovators and industry captains making tremendous strides in each area: Dean Kamen’s “Slingshot,” a technology which can transform polluted water, salt water or even raw sewage into incredibly high-quality drinking water for less than one cent a liter; the Qualcomm Tricorder X PRIZE which promises a low-cost, handheld medical device that allows anyone to diagnose themselves better than a board certified doctor; Dickson Despommier’s “vertical farms,” which replaces traditional agriculture with a system that uses 80 percent less land, 90 percent less water, 100 percent fewer pesticides and zero transportation costs. As a bonus, the authors provide a detailed reference section filled with ninety graphs, charts and graphics offering much of the source data underpinning their conclusions.

Providing abundance is humanity’s grandest challenge—this is a book about how we rise to meet it.

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