Bruce Gjovig is no stranger to pioneering and innovation in business. The founder of UND’s Center of Innovation joined MacTalk to discuss his latest writing project which chronicles agricultural innovation in northwest Minnesota and North Dakota.
While on the subject of innovation Bruce, a native of western North Dakota, proudly recounts the petroleum extraction revolution that began in the Bakken which has made the United States an energy exporter and changed strategic equations for the nation. However, he’s most excited about current efforts underway in the Bakken to continue that extraction revolution by extracting a higher percentage of petroleum from the shale in the Bakken.
Terry also discusses the most exciting innovations in the world of UAS, especially in the area of agriculture and emergency operations. The Summit takes place on August 21-23, 2017 at the Alerus Center.
Mark Jendrysik, Professor of Political Science & Public Administration at the University of North Dakota joins us to talk about whether the nation has outgrown its need for political parties or if they still contribute to furthering the common good.
I THINK THEY SHOULD BE BANNED… THEY HAVE CLEARLY OUTLIVE THEIR USEFULNESS IF THEY EVER HAD ANY. Jendrysick will weigh in on the subject.
Bruce Gjovig, the recently retired leader of UND’s Center for Innovation, joined MacTalk to discuss his career as the founder and builder of the Center and it’s noteworthy achievements over the course of over thirty years.
In an incredible interview, Bruce discusses Tom Clifford’s influence in the creation of the Center, its initial funding, the Flood of 1997, the creation of the Center’s Foundation and the role James Ray played in expanding the Center.
Bruce also discusses how was the Center for Innovation is funded, if he was asked to steer the Center in a new direction by the new UND Administration and how his termination was handled by the University.
From growing up on a farm/ranch near Crosby, ND to leading UND’s Center for Innovation for three decades, Bruce Gjovig built a self-sufficient organization with the soul of an entrepreneur. He’s not done yet either. A GREAT INTERVIEW.
Professor David Flynn, the Chair of UND’s Economics & Finance Department joined MacTalk and Mike McNamara, and spoke of his concern for economic diversity in the region “essentially, a lot of the eggs are in a very few baskets, petroleum and the businesses that support it and ag and the businesses that support it.” Flynn believes that the region ought to move in the direction of software application development because of the abundance of talent in local universities and the huge financial upside that is resident in software development.
Flynn went on to discuss topics in the news such as the changing face of manufacturing, “the financial sector contributes more to the nation’s GDP than manufacturing does currently” and further, “it won’t be your grandfather’s factory.” He’s not optimistic.
The middle class is also a concern for the the UND Economist, “The existence of the middle class is something we have to have an extended discussion about, I think at some level it is threatened. I just don’t think the protectionist policies we’re talking about, for the industries we’re talking about, now are a ticket back to a growing, flourishing middle class. Automation, computer system driven manufacturing are what really rule the day in the larger scale type manufacturing” (cars, machinery), which simply won’t employ large numbers he concluded.
Flynn believes the Federal Government has a role in sustaining the middle class of the nation “I don’t think we can sit there and say ‘you’ll have a lifetime guarantee in a good paying sector that you can hand of to your child.’ Economies change, people change, we need to adapt to that change.”
Downtown Grand Forks is also a bit of a tricky issue to Flynn, “the economic argument for commercial vibrancy downtown is hard to make, given where retail relocated.” His solution? “Idiosyncratic shops, not larger scale retail, and you probably need to develop a mixed use of space with retail, service and loft space.” When asked about residential space leading other development downtown, as it has done in many downtown districts as they’ve redeveloped Flynn responded “I think that is the kind of thing you would be looking at.”
From a historians perspective, contemporary political events in the United States are concerning. Al Berger, historian at the University of North Dakota, discusses things that have gotten his attention from propaganda to fake news to mass deportations.
“What we’re seeing is some very disturbing tendencies. We are not approaching a slippery slope, we are on a slippery slope. This has happened before” he expressed in an interview on MacTalk with Mike McNamara.
“We are seeing, on the table right now, things that if you go back to Germany in the 1930’s were the first step in the Holocaust. Not on the horizon but there. Mass deportations of people defined as ‘alien, other.'”