Beyond Moonshots: Mars 🚀

img_8168-1      By Cindy Chin, CEO, CLC Advisors, LLC

This article is the first of a series of articles on design thinking and what we at CLC Advisors, LLC call “i.e.,” the “idea economy.”

This week alone, I traveled from one continent to another and down the eastern coast and back home again. All this air travel was made possible by the investment, research, and development in science and technology, some of which came from space research from NASA and the military. Some of that investment birthed technologies like satellites and GPS for air transport guidance, internet connectivity and the wide array of mobile apps on my smartphone to get me to my destinations, reminders, plane ticket bookings, wingtip technologies on the Boeing and Airbus planes, wind and jet stream resiliency for airplane stability, weather guidance for a smoother ride home, medical research on passenger comfort, and research on gravity to land safely on the ground to name a few on what tax payer dollars and investments in science, technology, and space years ago has provided for our technologies today.

This week culminated in some spending two days with IBM’s OS Earth group, a new think tank bringing together a group of designers, scientists, and coders, the more fashionable of names now for one who was a programmer mere decades ago. I was reminded again yesterday during our sessions of why we are often drawn to the impossible and tasked with finding those answers and solutions to burning questions. It is great leadership that can allow impossible to become possible and no matter who is sitting in an office in a city, territory, or country near you, that progress cannot be stifled.

“Newton explored the meaning of gravity. Last month electric lights and telephones and automobiles and airplanes became available. Only last week did we develop penicillin and television and nuclear power, and now if America’s spacecraft succeeds in reaching Venus, we will have literally reached the stars before midnight tonight.

This is a breathtaking pace, and such a pace cannot help but create new ills as it dispels old, new ignorance, new problems, new dangers. Surely the opening vistas of space promise high costs and hardships, as well as high reward.

So it is not surprising that some would have us stay where we are a little longer to rest, to wait. But this city of Houston, this state of Texas, this country of the United States was not built by those who waited and rested and wished to look behind them. This country was conquered by those who moved forward — and so will space.”
– President John F. Kennedy, Jr.

As I watched a program hosted by Morgan Freeman on wormhole theories, I was also reminded that time does not always move linearly. Einstein in his theory of relativity proved that time sometimes folds and we see patterns of repetitiveness. This is one of those times, but no matter what, it is always fluid. So, take this time to move to the past for a little over 17 minutes to one of the greatest and inspirational leaders with whom we had too short of time with, but in that short time inspired a generation and the ripple effects of an incredible era of invention, innovation, new industries, humanity, and wealth creation. Believe me, it is worth those 17 minutes of time to hear those presidential words again.

The broad advancements in science in the areas of climate change, earth science, research and development, mathematics, and technology are still necessary and to echo White House Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith, “not a charity case, but a prosperity case.” It is all hands on deck and imperative for the survival of many species on this Spaceship Earth.

If you are an entrepreneur or startups who are working on climate change, aerospace, data science your own Mars Shot, or market entry into the United States, our team at CLC Advisors, LLC can help you. Contact us to find out more information or go to our website

About CLC Advisors, LLC
CLC Advisors, LLC is a firm of trusted advisors and management consultants focusing on development and execution strategies to build and incubate value-based business ventures, innovations, initiatives, and forward technologies. We are dedicated to finding solutions for traditional business models or expanding into the growing arenas of impact investing, corporate social responsibility, sustainability, and philanthropy venture capital.

#inspiration #moonshots #science #datascience #climatechange #space #aerospace #Sundaywisdom #entrepreneur #startups

Perfect Pitch

By Cindy Chin, CLC Advisors, LLC CEO

My thoughts on the proposed acquisition of Steinway & Sons by Kohberg & Co. (Note: the company has a brief period in which to gauge interest from other buyers.) Initially, I was saddened and concerned that a cherished institution with such a significant and rich musical history has been acquired by another private financial entity with little transparency as to the future of the beloved piano purveyor. Then upon more reflection and thought, I was relieved that the number to acquire Steinway is in the upwards of $438MM. That’s right, folks. FOUR HUNDRED THIRTY-EIGHT MILLION U.S. DOLLARS. Far more than what classical music or instrument manufacturers have been given clout in the past. Furthermore, it places a firm, significant and respectable value on a weak market/ecosystem for music and the arts.

While some of my friends and colleagues in the music world may think that Steinway is selling out, I’d like to take the time to reflect on the number of inferior Steinway pianos that exist out there, many of which are in the revered Valhalla-like walls of Juilliard in the practice rooms. Yes, that’s right. The MAJORITY of the Steinway pianos are old, trashed, and acoustically on their last breaths since as a pianist it is difficult to transport your instrument like a string or woodwind player, etc. Unless, of course, you’re Liberace or Lang Lang.

That said, I have had the privilege to play pianos of unique outstanding and exceptional caliber only thrice in my life: 1. a Bösendorfer (at Westminster Choir College, I believe) during my competition years in high school, 2. The concert grand Steinway gently hidden inside the recital hall of the Chamber Music Society (the piano is the equivalent of a Ferarri – I kid you not), and 3. a certain well-known violinist’s Steinway. The latter two only happened in the past 3 years. The Bösendorfer had far more value as I was at the top of my own technical abilities as a pianist.

In summary, I wish Kohlberg & Co. the best of luck in revitalizing Steinway & Sons in the hopes that they infusion of cash will positively impact the production of stellar, world-class instruments that wonder and delight musicians of all technical skill from the virtuoso to the beginner. Better pianos means they’ll be played, kept, and therefore less disposal in the trash and environment.

This is the new age for music and the performing arts. I am delighted that someone else thought so too.



Ethos: the distinguishing character, sentiment, moral nature, or guiding beliefs of a person, group, or institution.

Our ethos at CLC Advisors is the exchange of ideas through art, film, music or dance so that the communication gap does not exist between international relations, business, or emerging markets. Coca-Cola’s Small World vending machine achieved that in Indian-Pakistani relationship during the recent launch that was captured in a short video and widely spread over YouTube. It is a illustration of the effect of how the combination of the arts can cross borders, grow or innovate brand recognition and sales in an industry sector, measure the neuroscience in human receptivity to brands, and create new global ecosystems.

From the science of understanding the human mind and condition to how a individual perceives information, consumes material goods, to purchasing decisions affecting economic markets, models creating and shaping developing markets, there are tipping points that exist in which points of social change can be directly measured and quantified. With these points, changes in philanthropic giving and new capitalist models are created by incorporating salient data points from both public and private sectors. By observing the growing shift in market share from the for-profit sector into the not-for-profit sector, social impact and financial products such as social impact bonds will continue to grow and open without borders in the impact investing sector where there is no other market for philanthropy.