John Kao

Chairman, ThayerMahan

Dubbed “Mr. Creativity” and a “Serial Innovator” by The Economist, John is a thought leader, practitioner and activist, who has played a leading role in the fields of innovation and business creativity for over 30 years. He blends the perspectives of former Harvard Business School professor, best-selling author, serial entrepreneur, musician, master facilitator, Harvard-trained psychiatrist, and Tony-nominated producer of film and stage. John’s work reflects an ongoing engagement with advanced, disruptive technologies. His advisory and venture development activity has embraced fields as diverse as innovation learning, blockchain credentialing for education, AI and big data models for microbiome research and ocean surveillance, data ownership and privacy, immersive gaming, collaboration technology and more. John received BA and MD degrees from Yale University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. He is a fellow of the Royal Society of Art and Yamaha’s first “innovation artist.” In the summer of 1969, he apprenticed ro rock legend Frank Zappa.

Subscribe for updates

A weekly update of what’s on the Global Agenda

© 2021 World Economic Forum

Privacy Policy & Terms of Service