In the Big Apple we don’t do things by halves, and that’s why we’ve selected the world famous Central Park as home to the New York Imagine If Insights Festival. The iconic Tavern on the Green venue, located on the west side of the park is where we’ll welcome you to attend, network with professionals, gain insights and stretch your thinking. Renowned speakers will include Robert Urban, Former Global Head of Johnson & Johnson Innovation, Rachel Blumenthal, CEO Rockets of Awesome and Tom Wlodkowski, Head of Accessibility at Comcast along with many others and our own experts from North Highland. 


September 26, 2018

Click here to join us as we explore Imagine If...


Click on images for full bios


Imagine if your mortgage was a tool for navigating your life, not just a loan? I tracy stephan

Our mortgage and real estate markets have their roots in a legacy paper-based property record and lien system that was created when a borrower lived in the same property their entire life. And while having a home mortgage is a far more manageable and flexible thing than it used to be, it remains property-centered, not people-centered. Our lives are becoming ever more mobile, virtual, and global. Why shouldn’t our ideas about “home” follow suit?  The emergence of co-working and co-housing is a start, but ownership- and mortgage-based models of home need to evolve as well. Imagine a mortgage not staying in one place, but one that could follow you, accommodating your life changes and allowing for the creation of equity no matter where you lived.  The world’s housing needs are as varied as the people in it. I like to envision a world where housing finance recognizes that diversity, and helps more people achieve their own dream of home – whatever that dream is.


Imagine if you could reach a bigger world I Tom Wlodkowski 

In the United States, there are approximately 40M people with disabilities (PWDs) and approximately 44M households with at least one person with a disability.  There is a tremendous opportunity to reach a bigger world, create richer products, and create a richer employee experience if you weave Inclusive Design into the fabric of your company and the way you work. While their original intent may have been regulatory compliance or targeting products for people with disabilities, companies are discovering the broader benefits taking a more inclusive perspective in creating products -- and hiring employees.  The panel will discuss how they discovered this opportunity, how they obtained buy in and gained alignment from senior leadership, and most importantly, how they get things done.

IMAGINE IF YOUR CUSTOMERS WANTed TO BE FORGOTTEN | Dwight Specht, Ramin Beheshti & rachel blumenthal 

What happens when your customer wants you to personalize their experience but they also want to completely control all their data and want you to forget about them? At least until they really DON’T want you to. North Highland's Data and Analytics Guru, Dwight Specht, will host a panel discussion with business leaders who continue to excel in situations where their customers want to be forgotten. The panel will include Rachel Blumenthal, CEO Rockets of Awesome who uses a data based model for her fashion business that targets both moms and kids, where they feel like they’re in control and winning (she calls it the Jedi-mind trick). Ramin Beheshti, CTO of Dow Jones, will also join the panel. His company uses its world class data to personalize the experience for WSJ subscribers as well as reinforce its professional information products and services like Risk and Compliance. The panel will examine the implications to business models, customer experience orchestration and customer analytics when customers control your approach to and knowledge of them.

Imagine IF You Could Bottle Inspiration I CHARLes vivian

In 2017, Charles was named the UK’s ’Inspirational Business Leader of the Year' at the UK Business Awards. This was in recognition of his strong and visionary leadership and direction during some challenging times in the UK business, which ultimately led to the company rallying around a central mission and achieving great success. In this talk, Charles explores the essence of inspiration and based on his belief that anyone can inspire others to achieve great things, provides a formula for how to do this.  He draws on stories from both his experience and the deeds of others who inspired and guided him.


We’ll explore why now is the time that companies need to become Cognitive. We will share what’s required to become of a Cognitive Enterprise, with special consideration of what it means to your future workforce, your data ecosystem, and how to drive bottom-line impacts. Whether your organization is barely experimenting with cognitive technologies, or deeply immersed in them, this chat is sure to spark critical thoughts for your journey.


In the 1995 New York Times Best-Seller “The Discipline of Market Leaders,” the authors suggested that leading companies must choose to differentiate on Customer Intimacy, Product Leadership, or Operational Excellence.  Today’s market results suggest that it’s only customer intimacy and the resulting customer-centric organization that offers sustainable competitive advantage. How do you achieve customer-centricity?  By embracing and enabling four key operating principles – your company must transform to be Purposeful, Conscious, Cognitive and Adaptive. We’ll talk about those that are doing so and the advantages it provides.


Join this quick-fire guided ideation session, created by our resident innovation strategy expert and Wharton School faculty Rob Mann. Based on immersive approaches used with innovation leaders that get superior innovation results, quickly apply rapid techniques inspired by award winning technologies (from SXSW Interactive) to your own organization. You’ll take previously unforeseen ideas back to your business based on emerging technologies that aren't on your radar yet - making for some really interesting and tangible results!

Imagine if you could spot 'fake news' in real time | jack stenson

Powered by North Highland’s expertise in artificial intelligence and developed in partnership with the world’s leading media organizations, Voyc is a fully-automated voice scanning tool that empowers presenters and producers to correct misinformation live on air. It can also alert journalists to news stories… before they break on Twitter.

Imagine if we could re-imagine healthcare | Robert Urban

Have you ever truly reflected on the deep interlink between how much we “care” about a given pursuit and the resulting “quality” of our efforts and thus outcomes. In this session we’ll apply this to healthcare and the bold assertion that we (as individuals) do not care about healthcare, at least not soon enough. As healthy individuals we all too seldom pay keen attention to the details of our behaviors or (the then unneeded) healthcare system. Yet when we or a loved one are abruptly transformed from a consumer into a patient, often the range of choices then available and the good outcomes that could result are significantly compromised. Together we’ll begin to “reimagine", focusing on building new approaches to discovering healthcare solutions that are entrepreneurially executed and patient-centric. How can networks of participants (and customers/patients) be involved? What’s the role that data, data ownership, privacy and personal agency play? We’ll highlight several examples in new types of new healthcare solutions and business models to stretch your thinking and help you ‘Imagine if…’