Published on December 27, 2007
Frontiers of Economic Change: Ted Gordon The Millennium Project Frontiers of Economic Change Millennium Project…are groups of individuals and institutions that connect global and local views in:: Millennium Project… are groups of individuals and institutions that connect global and local views in: Cyber Node Washington, DC Buenos Aires Cairo London Prague Moscow Rome Madurai Tokyo Beijing Tehran Sao Paulo Caracas Helsinki Paris New Delhi Calgary Silicon Valley Berlin Kuwait Pretoria/Johannesburg Sidney Mexico City Seoul Ottawa Istanbul Bogota Slide3: Millennium Project… Glimpses of the Future: Glimpses of the Future The Singularity is Near (Ray Kurzweil) The World is Flat (Thomas Friedman) The 15 Global Challenges (The Millennium Project) The Drivers of Economic Change(our agenda): The Drivers of Economic Change (our agenda) Energy, Oil, and Politics Science & Technology (S&T) Population Growth and Aging Globalization (shifting patterns of supply, demand, and labor) Industry Synergies Surprises The Acceleration of Changeis Accelerating: in 25 years…: The Acceleration of Change is Accelerating: in 25 years… Practical nanotechnology everywhere Energy: post oil peak transition Transgenic animals Personalized products and services Computer/ drug enhanced mental capacity Longevity RFID chips Universal monitoring: who’s where New moral issues: birth, death, sovereignty A Simple History and an Alternative Future: A Simple History and an Alternative Future Slide8: Example of SOFI (State of the Future Index) variables: Infant mortality Food availability GNP per capita Access to fresh water CO2 emissions Literacy Wars AIDS deaths Terrorist attacks Debt ratio Unemployment Calories per capita Health care Forest lands Rich poor gap … SOFI 2006: 20 Variables Getting Better?: Getting Better? Progress in: GDP per capita Calories per capita Life expectancy Literacy Infant mortality Access to fresh water Access to health care School enrollment Regression in: CO2 emissions Unemployment Forest lands Rich poor gap AIDS deaths Debt ratio Terrorist attacks Getting Better?: Getting Better? Global GDP up 4.8% in 2005 Per capita GDP up 3.6% in 2005 Terrorism up (Is their strategy to break the economy, per the US in the Cold War?) Organized Crime (Estimates- $1 trillion paid in government bribes, $2 trillion for organized crime; laundering may reach $6 trillion) Over Consumption (20% more than sustainable) Hunger to do what is right, but effective decisions, leadership, and action are missing Slide11: Economic Forecasts Society of Actuaries Slide12: Examples of Wide Variation in Forecast Rationales Outlook for the USA The USA will be well along toward second-rate status by 2024. The USA reasserts and further develops its moral, political, and economic leadership Ability of Regulators Inflation is (or is not)… within the power of the Federal Reserve Bank to control I think extremely high CPI inflation will be less frequent in the next 20 years, as the Fed has made the commitment for price stability. The Fed may not be able to effectively offset a global recession Economic Troubles Economic collapse of USA based on debt and deficits The retired baby boom generation demanding huge amounts of services, especially health care Slide13: “Sustainable” Shell scenario Carbon sequestration Energy Waves: Decarbonization and Hydrogenization: Energy Waves: Decarbonization and Hydrogenization Oil Reserves by Cost: Oil Reserves by Cost Bioenergy and “eternal” energy: Bioenergy and “eternal” energy Photosynthesis CO2 + 2 H2O + light → (CH2O) + O2 + H2O From fossil hydrocarbons to live carbohydrates Craig Venter and his petroleum bacteria Slide17: China and Automobiles Slide18: Sources of Acceleration of Science and Technology Building on prior achievements Communications Synergy Instrumentation Globalization Slide19: Synergy: A Big One Cosmetics Food Understanding mind, brain Brain prosthesis True AI Improved decisionmaking Smart machines Tiny robots Swarm machine Cognitive Science Nanotech Information Technology Future: Computers as small as synapses An atomic scale general purpose assembly machine could copy itself in a week; a billion in a year(Minsky) Tiny computers Smart chips Eyes and ears everywhere Implantable monitors Imagining Slide20: Some S&T Frontiers Energy Computers Nano scale Genetics Information Medicine Pharmaceuticals Quantum processes Life extension (immortality?) Slide21: SIMAD (Single Individual MAssively Destructive) Privacy compromised: technology tracks everyone, everywhere, everytime Confusion over what is real Computers that evolve Super intelligent computer viruses Biological WMD (Weapons of Mass Destruction) Loss of biodiversity and altered varieties Internet: drugs, dangerous tech More sophisticated military weaponry Creation of new species (e.g. bacteria) Some S&T Dangers Source: Millennium Project, S&T Study 2001, and TG Population and Aging: Population and Aging Population 1980 = 4 billion 2000 = 6 billion 2050 = 9 billion 2100 = 5.5 billion (?), but depends on family decisions, technology, ethics, epidemics, and life expectancy Aging Life expectancy is falling in Africa due to AIDS Men approaching women’s; about 65 years 2100 = 100 years or ?? Some New Industries: Some New Industries Factory foods: meat from stem cells Pharma foods (e.g. genetically modified food to contain edible vaccines for HIV, hepatitis B, etc.) Asteroid Watch (July 3, 2006, just beyond the moon; April 13, 2029, 18,600 miles away) Robotics Connecting everything not connected Bio-production (hydrogen and gasoline from photosynthesis) Artificial organs (by depositing living cells, layer by layer, using dot matrix printers) Cloaking (invisibility) Slide24: Synergy: Food Cosmetics Food Spread of cosmetic medicine ‘Real” cosmetics (e.g. Retin a) Food as a delivery system for cosmetics and drugs Cosmetics Pharmaceuticals Food Prescription foods Food cocktails to order in pharmacies Prescription restaurants Personalized drugs Food for beauty Food for memory Food for performance Imagining Slide25: Robotics Sony: AIBO Slide27: Dolly: the cloned sheep Slide28: Riken Brain Institute www.brain.riken.go.jp Some “Good Bets” on the Global Economic Future: Some “Good Bets” on the Global Economic Future Bio-bugs, tar sands, and gas Inflation (high demand for government services) Economies based value added and leisure as routine work moves around the world Routine work becomes roboticized; the world isn’t as flat as it used to be! Powerful illicit and acceptable drugs China and India as target markets and global suppliers Corruption inevitable Fighting terrorism trumps some freedoms and privacy Some Surprises: Some Surprises A West Point University of Decision Making A science of social epidemiology The blurring or organized crime and terrorism Brain to computer hook-ups; brain decoding Human cloning accepted as rational Tens of thousands of people believing they are essentially immortal Surveillance media and identification software Why Do Futures Research?: Why Do Futures Research? Opens policy alternatives, new possibilities Helps establish limits and ranges Creates a sense of a shared future Crystallizes areas of agreement, disagreement Helps to identify desirable futures Increases chances of avoiding the worst and capturing the best the future has to offer What is the future?: What is the future? The future is no longer what it used to be! Mafalda Muchas gracias!: Ted Gordon The Millennium Project Muchas gracias!