The Fusion Future?

A guest blog from Romi Mahajan, CEO ExoFusion

The demand for energy is insatiable as the population grows and consumption continues unabated. Legitimate stresses over anthropogenic global warming, diminishing resources, and energy inequality have governments, social bodies, and scientists searching for solutions and innovating relentlessly to secure a sustainable future. While some damage has already been done, the future is at stake.

Can we usher in a “Fusion Future?”

Nuclear Fusion is the grail of energy. Clean, abundant energy, harnessing the motive force of the stars, is the bogey. While fusion has been understood for eight decades, the rapid pace of change- powered by governments, labs, private fusion companies, and collaborations between all parties—has made the target visible for the first time.

There are still scientific, technical, and capital-based hurdles to Commercially Viable Fusion (CVF) at scale, but the prognosis is good, in fact great.

Keeping our eyes on the ball is necessary now, more than ever. When a critical mass of people, capital, and technology forms, good things happen, but so do bad things. Egos, inertia, competitive siloing, cliques, and rigid orthodoxies start to be “the story.” Public Relations becomes the form of communication versus, say, scientist-scientist communication and collaboration. The “Me first” attitude rears its head.

Some of these tendencies are natural. The animal spirits can animate any field, but they can also retard any field. The Fusion Future depends on us as an industry and community curbing our worst instincts and working openly towards the outcomes we all desire.

This doesn’t mean we have to do away with competition, IP, or closed-garden innovation. What it means is we must do so in a manner that builds the entire ecosystem and doesn’t create a single point of monopoly or failure. The daisy chain required to get to CVF is delicate and we must understand that and tiptoe around it so as not to hurt the enterprise as a whole. Relatedly, in a game of limited capital, it is important that money is divided across bets and not concentrated too deeply. Similarly, fusion “machine” companies must get enough funding but not to the exclusion of supply-chain or enabling-technology plays.

The Fusion Future is in sight. It is our choice whether we optimize and accelerate the path to CVF or if we let the worst tendencies of pure capitalism take over. A balance is needed and if we strike it right, we’ll be able to usher in truly a new world.

Written by Paul Dunay
Paul Dunay is an award-winning B2B marketing expert with more than 20 years’ success in generating demand and creating awareness for leading technology, consumer products, financial services and professional services organizations. Paul is the global vice president of marketing for Maxymiser a leading web optimization firm, and author of four “Dummies” books: Facebook Marketing for Dummies (Wiley 2009), Social Media and the Contact Center for Dummies (Wiley Custom Publishing 2010), Facebook Advertising for Dummies (Wiley 2010) and Facebook Marketing for Dummies 2nd Edition (Wiley 2011). His unique approach to marketing has led to recognition of Paul as a BtoB Magazine Top 25 B2B Marketer of the Year for 2010 and 2009 and winner of the DemandGen Award for Utilizing Marketing Automation to Fuel Corporate Growth in 2008. He is also a finalist for the last six years in a row in the Marketing Excellence Awards competition of the Information Technology Services Marketing Association (ITSMA), and is a 2010 and 2005 gold award winner in Driving Demand. Buzz Marketing for Technology, Paul’s blog, has been recognized as a Top 20 Marketing Blog for 2009 and 2008, a Top Blog to Watch for 2009 and 2008, and an Advertising Age Power 150 blog in the “Daily Ranking of Marketing Blogs.” Paul has shared his marketing thought leadership as a featured speaker for the American Marketing Association, BtoB Magazine, CMO Club, MarketingProfs, Marketing Sherpa, Marketing Executives Networking Group (MENG), and ITSMA. He has appeared on Fox News, and his articles have been featured in BusinessWeek, The New York Times, BtoB Magazine, MarketingProfs and MarketingSherpa. Paul holds an Executive Certificate in Strategy and Innovation from MIT’s Sloan School of Management and a bachelor’s degree in Marketing and Computer Science from Ithaca College.