Big Tech Conference Draws Big Crowd

On October 2, 2020, LRI held its first online conference: Big Tech: Monopoly’s Second Moment? The Evolution and Trajectory of Government Policy and Corporate Strategy. The event far exceeded expectations with nearly a thousand people registering for the event. With viewers from Canada, the USA, the UK, and the EU, the conference underscored just how concerned people are about the consolidation of social, economic, and political power in the hands of a few – the so-called FAANG companies: Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Google (Alphabet).

Discussing one of the great public policy challenges of our time, the conference brought together senior representation from the public, academic, and corporate domains. The opinions were varied and thought-provoking, pivoting from historical insight to contemporary analysis. The conference, in short, delivered in full on the LRI mandate to bring experts to the table on matters of significance. A summary document and video highlights will be available shortly.

Co-sponsored by LRI and the Wilson/Currie Chair in Canadian Business History, Rotman School of Management, University of Toronto, the event provided an important opportunity for the public to access subject experts in debate on this most complex topic.

Our thanks go to event co-chairs Dr. Laurence B. Mussio, Co-Founder and Director of LRI; Dr. Dimitry Anastakis, the Wilson/Currie Chair in Canadian Business History, University of Toronto; keynote guests LRI governor the Hon. Dr. Kevin Lynch, PC, OC, PhD, LLD, and Dr. Richard Langlois, University of Connecticut; and interlocutors Mr. Simon Kennedy, Deputy Minister, Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada; Dr. Gillian Hadfield, Director, Schwartz-Reisman Institute, University of Toronto; Ms. Claudette McGowan, Global Executive Officer for Cyber Security, TD Bank; Mr. Victor Tung, Executive Vice President U.S Chief Technology & Operations Officer & Chief Operating Officer, BMO Financial Group; Dr. Michael Aldous, Senior Lecturer, Queen’s Management School, Queen’s University, Belfast; LRI governor Mr. David Walmsley, Editor-in-Chief, The Globe and Mail; Mr. Lawson A.W. Hunter, Senior Counsel, Stikeman Elliott LLP; Dr. Taylor Owen, Max Bell School of Public Policy & Beaverbrook Chair in Media, Ethics and Communications, McGill University; Dr. Elizabeth Acorn, Assistant Professor, Dept. of Political Science, University of Toronto; and Mr. David Skok, CEO & Editor-in-Chief, The Logic.

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