“If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you’re not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later.”
It was that simple quote from British entrepreneur Sir Richard Branson that was to prove pivotal in the career of agri-tech futurist and thought leader Dr Rosie Bosworth.
“That quote taught me to say yes to opportunities that I would never have had the courage to take on previously, opportunities that have subsequently gone on to transform my life. His influence has also inspired me to move beyond any fears of inadequacies towards cultivating a mindset of taking risks and constant self-growth.”
Gaining a Bachelor of Commerce with first class honours in 2007 and completing a Ph.D. in 2013 focusing on disruptive technologies and innovation systems, Rosie’s academic interests are closely aligned with her own personal philosophy on life; that it’s best lived forward and understood backwards.
“I’ve discovered that embracing the many frustrations of life, living unconventionally and taking on the hardest risks delivers the best outcomes. You have to trust that, more often than not, it’s the times when you feel your life is most off track and you’re ‘going nowhere’ that set the foundations for life’s best learnings and that yield the unforeseen opportunities downstream.”
With an appetite for finding ways to improve sustainability and resilience for agricultural and food systems in New Zealand and globally, her research interests these days are focused on the intersection of technologies, science and biotech on the future of global food production.
Monitoring global industry technology and innovation trends in order to educate and future proof their impact on our economy, Rosie finds herself regularly being asked to speak at conferences and seminars and advising businesses on the future of food and agriculture and strategic pathways forward.
Not afraid to speak out when she feels it’s needed, her call last year that New Zealand risked “...becoming the Detroit of agriculture” made front page headlines.
“What a lot of people don’t realise is the big push in Silicon Valley right now isn’t consumer technology it’s food technology. The food bio-tech space is literally booming. There are plenty of well-funded start-ups looking to potentially decimate the existing animal agriculture industry with superior alternatives and technology, many with serious backers including the likes of Sir Richard Branson and Bill Gates. I don’t think many people in New Zealand realise how disruptive this technology has the potential to be for our economy.”
More recently Rosie was part of the founding team that launched RethinkX in San Francisco - an independent think tank that analyses and forecasts the speed and scale of technology-driven disruption and its implications across society. The think tank produces compelling, impartial, data-driven analyses that identify pivotal choices to be made by investors, business, policy and civic leaders.
Spending time working between New Zealand and Silicon Valley, Rosie’s goal is to put her strategic communication and business development skills to work and move the conversation forward both locally and globally, and to build global businesses in the future foods space.
“I want to help New Zealand manage what is going to be a huge shift in the next decade. Both as a thoughleader and as an entrepreneuer. Advances in food bio-tech aren’t going away and ultimately this is an area where I want to focus my efforts in the future from a communications perspective, both locally and globally.”