There’s a simple rule at GTEC: if it’s a football analogy, Director (Education) Christoph wrote it. Once more the rule applies – this time in his article for TechBerlin.
Christoph’s theory goes that though people say “there’s no use comparing XX [insert local startup system] to the Valley”, they invariably do. Blaming anyone and anything from politicians and the economy to (in Germany) the German himself for his risk aversion (investors) and fear of failure (founders), they just can’t help themselves.
But instead of lamenting this inability to keep up, the answer, Christoph says, is to recognise Silicon Valley for what it is – an outlier, not the industry standard. Silicon Valley is a one-of-a-kind confluence of policies, investments and decisions over the course of decades. Just as you wouldn’t celebrate the superior state of progress in Germany in comparison to North Korea, an outlier at the opposite end of the spectrum, it’s pointless to do so with the Valley.
More productive is to apply that old statistical trick of cutting out the outliers at both ends and then taking another look – at countries such as France, Japan or Australia which represent the current state of digital transformation, legislation, business models, startup incorporation and data security. Against this new median, Germany is actually doing rather well. In other words: the way to uncloud your vision of digital transformation is to leave out the player that commands most attention.
And this is where football comes in. Bayern Munich is an exceptional team, with more money and success than any other German club. Wouldn’t a Bundesliga without this outlier make more sense?
You can read Christoph’s full article here, with the in depth football reference and more detailed analysis of the shape of German entrepreneurship. It’s a great read!