TheBridge profile: Joshua New
Name: Joshua New
Current city: Washington, DC
Current job: Senior Policy Analyst, ITIF's Center for Data Innovation
Q. Favorite spot for a coffee meeting? La Colombe
Q. Describe how a skill you learned in a previous job helped you in your current job. Learn how to write well. You could be the most knowledgeable person about any given issue but if you can't communicate it well, it doesn't matter. It's really surprising how frequently I see people much further along in their careers than I that lack this skill.
Q. Job advice in three words? Read absolutely everything.
Q. How are you (or your company, org, nonprofit) currently bridging the gap between politics and tech / innovation and regulation? Right now a lot of my time is spent on issues related to artificial intelligence. Unfortunately, science fiction and pop culture has a huge impact on how non-tech people perceive AI, so a lot of what I do focuses on explaining away the hype and fear mongering so policymakers can tackle real issues.
Q. What can innovators teach policymakers? Do everything you can to raise the technical literacy of policymakers.
Q. What can policymakers teach innovators? Many policymakers want to support innovation while also addressing their constituents' fears and concerns. Unfortunately, those talking about fears and concerns normally dominate public conversations and thus get more of policymakers' attention. Innovators should learn from policymakers about how to respond to such concerns in a productive way that also supports innovation, rather than just sit out of these conversations and hope they blow over.
Q. Favorite book/podcast/long-form article you recommend? The Three-Body Problem series by Liu Cixin. It doesn't really have anything to say about technology and policy, it's just really, really good sci-fi that I can't recommend enough.
Q. Looking back, what advice would you give yourself in the beginning of your career? Teach yourself to code. Stop telling yourself you don't have time to learn because you obviously do.
Q. Do you have a favorite app? I spend a lot of time on Twitter but I'm not super happy about that.
Q. Do you have a morning routine? Try to wake up at 5:30. Go to the gym. Tell myself I'm going to meditate but run out of time.
Q. How do you unwind after work? I just started getting in to making gluten-free bread. It's so easy and so much better than store-bought that every company selling gluten-free bread should be ashamed.
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