Joining Variant: Alli Pope

Education to accelerate the ownership economy


I could not be more excited to announce that I am joining Variant as the Director of Education and Events. I will be working alongside LiJesseSpencer, and the rest of the incredible team to proliferate learning and knowledge sharing around building for the ownership economy.

For the past several years I have spent my time learning and working in the realm of education, with a focus on increasing opportunity and access to quality learning for all. As the world shifted into the pandemic and so many existing inequities in our educational system— and larger, our society— were magnified, I began searching for what a more equitable and accessible future might look like.

Historically, many have perceived education to be a catalyst for promoting economic mobility. It is largely true that higher levels of educational attainment positively correlate with increased income, but these gains exist relative to the different socioeconomic positions that dictate when, how, and if students enter the educational system. As a result, the average impact of education is to reinforce the differences and inequities that students bring with them into the classroom. The pandemic both exposed and exacerbated such inequities. So where do we go from here?

Insert the ownership economy. Our current systems— of work, education, and more— are flawed. Wealth, power, and opportunity continue to lie in the hands of a privileged few; the ownership economy aspires to change this. Both Jesse and Li have written extensively on the potential of the ownership economy in creating personal economic empowerment, and combating economic inequality by enabling everyone to become an owner of wealth-building assets. Further, Spencer is working to make building said ownership more open and accessible. Variant does not simply aim for financial returns, but to support and empower the builders and companies that will enable larger economic and social equality for the masses. Variant understands the power of community ownership and the vast impact it can have in building networks that grow bigger, faster, and as a force for developing more economic opportunity across the internet.

As Director of Education and Events it is my role to partner with founders, builders, and community members alike to provide the tools, education, and support needed to bring the ownership economy thesis to fruition. This includes fostering connections and knowledge sharing opportunities for the talented founders in Variant’s portfolio in addition to ensuring that as builders, they have the resources, support, and expert mentorship they need to achieve their goals. It also includes working with the community LPs, experts, and larger community in Variant’s network to create educational materials and programs that help onboard and assist current and future builders understand emerging best practices in this still-nascent space. Variant is excited to partner with founders at the earliest possible stages, and my role is to help guarantee we have the best possible resources, materials, and know-how to do so.

If you are a founder, aspiring builder, LP or community member, I would love to get to know you! You can reach me via DM or at [email protected] with any questions, comments, event requests, etc. at any time. I can’t wait to hear from you!