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Networks for People 2000

Entrepreneurship — Non-Profits @ Internet Speed

TOP's Networks for People 2000 conference was held on October 30-31, 2000, at the Hilton Crystal City at National Airport in Arlington, Virginia. The conference provided a forum for more than 450 people to discuss the connection of people, information technology, and services transforming American life, bringing together leaders in the field of telecommunications and information technology to express their views on what's state-of-the-art now and, as we enter the 21st century, what the future might hold for information technologies and public policies affecting them.

The theme of "Entrepreneurship" in this year's conference does not mean we are concerned solely with making money. In fact, most serious discussions of entrepreneurship focus more on institutional flexibility and vision than upon cash flow.

For an institution to be entrepreneurial, it has to be able (1) to combine adherence to its core values with adaptability; (2) to form creative partnerships with institutions that might not normally be regarded as logical collaborators; (3) to diversity its funding base; (4) to make certain everyone connected with the organization understands the need to streamline the management process; and (5) to ensure that the entrepreneurial mindset reaches all levels of the organization.

Panel discussions focused on a number of themes related to the overall concept of entrepreneurship. In addition, TOP grantees and other pioneers in the field shared their experiences and talked about the lessons learned and innovations made as they developed their networking projects.

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