Automation & AI for Good

Automation & AI for Good


The growth of artificial intelligence (AI), automation, and robotics has disrupted the labor market and is changing the way we work. While one result of automating tasks previously done by people is that some jobs will disappear, increasing levels of automation can also be harnessed to benefit more people, create new jobs in emerging industries, and upskill the workforce to provide job stability.

This summer, Village Capital and Autodesk Foundation are partnering on a one-day forum to showcase and support startups that are building companies harnessing automation in ways that benefit society and the workforce. Companies selected will receive peer learning, access to cutting edge technologies, and executive level mentorship.

We’ll be showcasing startups using AI, automation, or robotics to create new jobs in emerging industries, fill gaps in the current workforce, and retrain or upskill workers whose jobs will be automated, freeing them up to focus on higher level tasks. Ten companies will be selected to participate.

Automation is inevitable, but we have the chance to harness technology in a positive way. We are excited to learn from entrepreneurs who are creating tools that allow people to produce more and higher quality products and services with less resources. These entrepreneurs will be critical to helping workers spend more time thinking creatively – allowing anyone, anywhere to imagine, design, and build a better world. 

The application deadline for this forum has passed.


Program Details

While the future of work is uncertain, we believe that startups have the potential to create much needed solutions that utilize technologies to bolster the job market and prepare workers for the jobs of tomorrow.

We are recruiting early-stage startups that are harnessing AI, automation, and robotics to create new jobs or augment the existing workforce in the following sectors: 

  • Construction
  • Education/Workforce development
  • Fintech
  • Health tech
  • Manufacturing

Over the course of the day, entrepreneurs selected to participate will engage in peer learning, collaborate with mentors, and have the opportunity to pitch to industry stakeholders, investors, and senior executives at Autodesk. They will also have the chance to win up to $10,000 in cash prizes.

Forum participants will gain access to:

  • Autodesk leadership and technology experts in design tools and emerging technologies
  • Free Autodesk software and/or cloud-based services via the Autodesk’s Entrepreneur Impact Program

Eligibility Requirements

Geography: US-based companies (or companies with a US entity)

Stage: seed stage, for-profit startups that have a minimum viable product and meaningful customer traction

Sectors: construction, education/workforce development, fintech, health tech, manufacturing

Forum Details

Date: Tuesday, June 12, 2018

Location: Autodesk (San Francisco, CA) 





Jean Shia Autodesk Foundation
Nate Yohannes Microsoft
Tess Posner AI4ALL
Yipeng Zhao Embark Ventures