Innovation for Hong Kong's Upward Social Mobility

39 4.4 Facing the Future 4.4.1 There is no reason to feel pessimistic. Many companies are rethinking their role in society. In August 2019, the CEOs of more than 180 leading companies in the United States signed the Business Roundtable’s new statement of corporate purpose, committing to creating economic opportunity for all of their stakeholders: customers, employees, suppliers, communities and shareholders93. 4.4.2 For example, JPMorgan Chase invested US$200 million in Detroit, where it has been in business for more than 85 years. As a result of their efforts, the city has created small businesses, good job opportunities and affordable housing. Other examples include United Technologies, which invested US$1.3 billion through its Employee Scholar Program and helped workers earn more than 40,200 degrees. 4.4.3 In Hong Kong, we have seen many young people face the same youthquakes and quarter-life crises. The difficulties of upward mobility, financial pressure, etc. have also tormented millennials in Hong Kong. If Hong Kong’s millennials lose their hope for the future for various reasons, it is definitely not a good thing for Hong Kong’s future. 4.4.4 The experience and research of the international community reminds us that although Hong Kong’s millennials face drastic challenges, the social issues can be solved if the government, corporation and the society can move forward with a pragmatic approach. For example, when JPMorgan Chase decided to move its Asia Pacific headquarters from Central to Kwun Tong, it conducted an in-depth study on the local community in Kwun Tong. Kwun Tong is one of the most polarized districts in Hong Kong. Located on the south side of Kwun Tong MTR station is the newly built central business district (CBD), and the north side of Kwun Tong MTR station is one of the most disadvantaged groups in Hong Kong. The study provided many constructive suggestions for how JPMorgan Chase can provide appropriate support to the disadvantaged groups in Kwun Tong94. 4.4.5 “The future promise of any nation can be directly measured by the present prospects of its youth95.” Governments, companies, and society are all responsible for paving the way for the younger generation (especially millennials) so that they can fully develop themselves. A well-developed Millennium Generation will bring prosperity to society. Innovation and technology should be one of the ways to lead millennials towards a bright future. 93 Dimon, J. (2020), “How to Save Capitalism”, Time, 3 January, pp. 56. 94 MIT Hong Kong Innovation Node (2020), Kowloon East: Inclusive Innovation & Growth. 95 John E. Kennedy, 35th President of the United States. 4 Youthquake and Quarter-Life Crisis