5 Questions with Matthew Griffin

March 20, 2018 / by Anna Vahromejeva

We’re excited to have Matthew Griffin, award-winning futurist and founder of the 311 Institute as a keynote for AI: Advertising & Beyond. Last week we sat down with Matthew to ask some questions about him and his work. To learn more, RSVP here.


1. How did you become a futurist?

Asides from a love of the future and the fact that one day we’ll all be living in it, one of my main motivations had to do with the fact that every company on the planet have three key levers in common – they all want to reduce costs, reduce risks, and grow.

While many organisations around the world are more than capable of helping organisations tackle the first two, often selling goods and services that help “consolidate” or “remove” people, I wanted to see if there was a way I could proactively and programmatically help organisations see what’s coming next so they could build new, prosperous businesses and industries that could “re- employ” if you will, many of those people the other companies “consolidated” or “removed.”

2. What does the 311 Institute do?

We are a global futures think tank working between the timeline of 2020 and 2070 that helps organisations, regulators and governments envision, build and lead the future. That said though we also believe in doing our best to make sure the future and its benefits are evenly distributed, and that no one, irrespective of ability, background or origin is left behind.

3. XPrize’s aim is to bring about radical breakthroughs for the benefit of humanity. As an advisor and mentor, can you explain more about the projects that you’ve worked on?

One of the main projects I’m involved with is helping put the world’s first private lunar rovers on the Moon and it’s not as easy as people think. A true ‘Moonshot’ in every sense of the word!

4. This year LoopMe’s conference has the title ‘AI: Advertising & Beyond’ What emerging technology to do you think will have the biggest impact on society?

There are a good number of powerful emerging technologies arriving that will have a big impact on society. The obvious one that comes to everyone’s mind is obviously Artificial Intelligence, followed by Blockchain and then often 3D Printing. The fact of the matter is that the greatest impacts will, come from how they’re combined together, along with other emerging technologies such as Molecular Assemblers, Nanotech, Robotics (both large and nano), and Synthetic Biology. The latter of which especially could help us cure many, many diseases and re-write the rule book on next-generation products and services, across all industries.

5. What role do you see AI playing in the future? Is there anything you’re particularly excited to see?

Personally, I’m excited to see how AI will help us improve global health and wellness, democratise healthcare and improve healthcare patient outcomes. There are already several examples of this, from smartphones that can diagnose diseases just by listening to your voice, to wearables that can predict you’re getting ill; and we’re just at the snowflake on the tip of the proverbial iceberg!