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About the Author

Pierre Omidyar

Pierre Omidyar is the CEO and Publisher of Honolulu Civil Beat.


To say that these are trying times doesn’t begin to describe the complex and highly nuanced impacts created by the COVID-19 pandemic around the world. Combined now with our country once again dealing with its history of racism and the ugly and damaging outcomes, we are in desperate need of solutions.

Hawaii is grappling with its own unique challenges. While the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths has thankfully been among the lowest in the nation, our unemployment rate now surpasses that of nearly every other state in the U.S.

The tourism and hospitality industries have been most notably battered, but countless other sectors are significantly impacted as citizens, businesses and critical institutions attempt to weather the ongoing storm.

Makapuu lighthouse Kaiwi. 31 oct 2016

Just like the rising sun lighting up Makapuu lighthouse, Hawaii has a chance now to create new beginnings and a better future. We need your ideas to guide us.

Cory Lum/Civil Beat

In a state where more than two-thirds of residents were already financially struggling, the domino-effect of COVID-related hardships for the majority of Hawaii’s citizens is extensive. With increased pressures placed on the agencies and systems people depend on — coupled with our islands’ own legacy of racial and cultural oppression and violence — we’re now facing a compounded crisis that will persist long after a full reopening.

The situation is shining a harsh light on our biggest vulnerabilities and forcing important conversations about our individual and shared priorities. But as I’ve heard said in many ways, we all have a choice in how we move forward – in what we take with us, what we create, and what we leave behind.

A Call For Conversation

We’re launching the new IDEAS section to solicit and record the bold ideas, creative solutions and informed perspectives from our state’s brightest minds. In many ways, this is why Civil Beat was created – to provide a civic square where we can all learn more about and better understand our home, discuss the challenges we’re facing, and explore ideas that have the potential to improve life for everyone in Hawaii.

Share Your Ideas

The information and viewpoints shared here will push beyond opinion to showcase ideas from experts in many fields. We want to learn how our current challenges are viewed by the people who deeply understand and study them – in both the context of our present situation and Hawaii’s history – and create a living, evolving space to explore diverse visions for the future of our state.

We welcome your submissions on any topics that impact life in Hawaii – from economic recovery and policy reform, to innovations in education, ideas for increased self-sustainability, and approaches to advancing equality, justice and resilience across the islands. Bring us your best thinking and let’s start a conversation that inspires action, engagement and progress.

There’s no question that our lives in Hawaii will be different moving forward, but I believe this challenge also presents us with a unique opportunity to envision a different, better future.


Read this next:

Diversity And Equity Must Guide Our Journey Ahead


Before you go…

During a crisis like this, it’s more important than ever to dig beyond the news, to figure out what government policies mean for ordinary citizens and how those policies were put together.

This is perhaps the biggest, most consequential story our reporters will ever cover. And at no other time in Civil Beat’s history have we relied on your support more. Please consider supporting Civil Beat by making a tax-deductible gift.

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About the Author

Pierre Omidyar

Pierre Omidyar is the CEO and Publisher of Honolulu Civil Beat.


Latest Comments (0)

Time to begin converting Hawaii's boating industry to electric. There are electric ferry boats in Canada, California, Washington, Norway, Finland, Denmark, Malta, Greece, New Zealand, Thailand, China, and Taiwan. There are solar electric ferry boats in India, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, and Australia. Replace the Lanai ( paging Mr. Larry Ellison ) and Molokai ferries with electric boats, and perhaps the rest of Hawaii's boating industry will follow.

konasian · 1 month ago

These ideas are extreme but I believe moving in the general direction of getting off the teat of currency can really unburden our livlihoods. For example, if we became food sustainable and we did not need to pay rents/mortgages most people would have 2-3x as much disposable income for things we require that are imports. 1. Decentralize & defund gov powers - think parliament, committees, and consultations with communities & hooponopono as needed2. Forgive all debt including mortgages. The banks have stolen from the people long enough, let the gov and police protect the people from the banks. 3. Increase food security through agriculture, restoring fishponds, and protect our waters from fishing for export until we can feed our people4. Encourage barter/coop based systems for food, water, and general services5. Make conveying property in Hawaii for any value illegal and after X number of years of community investment award individuals with homes/land

Ericakamundson · 1 month ago

MUSIC TOURISM IS THE ANSWER. Lmk when u guys are ready and I can explain in detail🙏🔮🌈🌞🌕🌎🌏🌍 here's the first clue ⏳☃️

dmz · 1 month ago

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About IDEAS

IDEAS is the place you'll find essays, analysis and opinion on every aspect of life and public affairs in Hawaii. We want to showcase smart ideas about the future of Hawaii, from the state's sharpest thinkers, to stretch our collective thinking about a problem or an issue. Email news@civilbeat.org to submit an idea.

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