2013 Ten-Year Forecast
2013 Ten-Year Forecast:
The future is life in an alternate reality.
It’s a trip across time and geography to a new and alien planet, with new economies driven by unexpected forms of wealth and work and new geographies inhabited by unforeseen variations on the human form.
This is not a game. It’s a global maneuver in which we will all participate, in which we will collectively create a new set of ground rules for operating at epic scales to meet epic challenges. You can think of this maneuver as the journey to the Second Curve—an invitation to make the leap.
The Curve of the Future
Civilization unfolds in cycles, in curves with modest beginnings, surprising inflection points, seemingly unassailable peaks, and surprising declines.
The past two centuries have seen the rise of an industrial civilization that has brought the world together in ways that the early explorers of the planet could never have imagined. But even as this first curve of globalization is still sweeping the world, a second curve is rising to displace it—to correct its mistakes, extend its lessons, and assure the continued evolution of the human species.
This Second Curve is already visible in unexpected hot spots of innovation around the world. But how will we recognize the transformational innovations? And where will they take us?
Seven signposts point us in the direction of the Second Curve:
- Second Curve innovations explicitly solve the critical problems of the next century—climate, energy, urbanization, population, migration, information overload, surveillance, and crime—by departing from business as usual.
- They recast the material world, tapping the emerging bio- and nano-sciences.
- They leverage global interconnection to build new kinds of communities and new forms of commerce.
- They embrace openness to rapidly evolve our technologies, our institutions, and our economic capacity.
- They build social value as an alternative to economic value—or to amplify economic value.
- They articulate more inclusive futures that empower those currently excluded from the “mainstream future.”
- They redefine “human” in the rapidly shifting fitness landscape of the planet.