That is today’s FT “Lunch with” piece, by John Thornhill, and of course she is an economist at Sussex. I hope the article is not too gated for you. Here is one bit:
As professor in the Economics of Innovation at Sussex University, Mazzucato is much in demand on the international lecture circuit for her iconoclastic views about how wealth is generated and the public sector’s vital role in promoting innovation. She is as forthright in her opinions as she is eloquent in expressing them.
She also has four children and I can testify she is what they call “a commanding presence.” In Singapore not long ago I told her she should have her own TV show, and I would not be surprised if this someday came to pass. Here is more:
Even Silicon Valley’s much-fabled tech entrepreneurs are not as smart as they like to think. Although Mazzucato lavishes praise on the entrepreneurial genius of the likes of Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, she says their brilliance tells only part of the story. Many of the key technologies used by Apple were first developed by public-sector agencies. Most of the key technologies that do the clever stuff inside your iPhone — including its geo-positioning system, the Siri voice-recognition service and multi-touch screen — were the offspring of state-funded research. “Government has invested in basic research, it has invested in applied research, it has invested in concrete companies [such as Tesla] all the way downstream, doing what venture capital should be doing if it was really playing the role it says it plays,” she says. “It is an incredibly active, mission-oriented role.”
In my view she overstates what are essentially some worthwhile points. For more you can read her book The Entrepreneurial State. Here is her home page. Here is her Wikipedia page. Here is her TED talk. She is here on Twitter.
From the interview, I enjoyed this line:
I walk in as an economist and I walk out as a life coach…
She ordered the soup and the duck.