Robin Chase‘s Biography
Robin Chase is a transportation entrepreneur, internet start-up trailblazer and keynote speaker.
A decade before Airbnb and Uber, Chase helped kickstart the ‘collaborative economy’ by co-founding Zipcar, which became the world’s largest carsharing service. The big idea was to enable convenient access to a valuable good (in this case, a vehicle) without requiring ownership.
Later in 2011, Chase founded Buzzcar, a peer to peer carsharing service in France (now merged with Drivy). Buzzcar is like traditional carsharing but better in that, in addition to renting vehicles by the hour or by the day, members can add their own cars to the carsharing pool.
More recently, Chase and others have founded Veniam. Their technology powers mesh networks which provide a new way for people, devices and appliances to connect to each other and to the internet. The holy grail is ubiquitous no-cost wireless internet access that isn’t controlled by the telecom giants.
Chase is on the Boards of the World Resources Institute and Tucows. She also served on the board of the Massachusetts Department of Transportation, the National Advisory Council for Innovation & Entrepreneurship for the US Department of Commerce, the Intelligent Transportations Systems Program Advisory Committee for the US Department of Transportation, the OECD’s International Transport Forum Advisory Board, the Massachusetts Governor’s Transportation Transition Working Group, and Boston Mayor’s Wireless Task Force.
Chase lectures widely, features regularly in the major media, and has received many awards in the areas of innovation, design, and environment, including Time 100 Most Influential People, Fast Company Fast 50 Innovators, and BusinessWeek Top 10 Designers. Robin graduated from Wellesley College and MIT’s Sloan School of Management, was a Harvard University Loeb Fellow, and received an honorary Doctorate of Design from the Illinois Institute of Technology.
She takes a keen interest in many topical issues including global warming.