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12 Themes for 2012: what we can expect in the year ahead

12 Themes for 2012: what we can expect in the year ahead

How governments research and communicate about the future Governments around the world are increasingly recognizing that they have a responsibility for structured thought and research about the future, both to shape their own initiatives, and to assist companies and institutions in the nation to survive and thrive in times of change. Examples of government futures groups include:Egypt: Center for Futures StudiesFrance: Centre d’Analyse StratégiqueIndia: Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment CouncilIndonesia: Badan Perencanaan dan Pembangunan NasionalMexico: 2030 VisionSingapore: Futures GroupSweden: Institute for Futures Studies Other governments, such as those of UK and USA, do extensive future studies, however these are distributed across a variety of departments and functions. Many of these operations do a good job at analysis, however usually communicate in traditional government-speak, including weighty reports written in officious language. The document below, Imagining the New Normal, is excellent. Imagining the New Normal

The Bank of Facebook: Currency, Identity, Reputation There has been much speculation recently about the role Facebook Credits could play in becoming a global virtual currency, and even the possibility of Facebook becoming a bank. In many ways, it already is becoming a bank – just not in the traditional sense. Facebook is harnessing the power of the social graph, and has certainly adopted an expanded definition of what ‘currency’ means. It’s time for the rest of us to hop on board. As I’ve been conducting research for The Future of Facebook Project, the experts and thought leaders interviewed shared some compelling views about the evolution of virtual currencies, and Facebook’s potential role in their development. Money is a tool we use for arms-length transactions, where there isn’t an assumption of any kind of relationship or trust between parties. What this means is that money isn’t the only kind of currency that can facilitate a transaction anymore. Credits as Currency Identity as Currency Reputation as Currency New Currencies = New Banks

Brainstorming 2.0: Making Ideas That Really Happen One of the most common questions we hear at 99U is: “How do I get more out of my brainstorming sessions?” While brainstorming sessions have become perhaps the most iconic act of creativity, we still struggle with how to give them real utility. The problem of course is that most brainstorming sessions conclude prematurely. We all love to dream big and come up with “blue sky” ideas. We’re less fond of diving into the nitty-gritty details of creative execution. As a result, we spend 90% of our time coming up with a bunch of great ideas, and maybe 10% (if any!) So how can we retool our approach to brainstorming to make it more effective? Disney’s rigorous creative process involves 3 distinct phases of idea development, each of which is designed to unfold in a separate room. Step 1 asks “WHAT are we going to do?” It’s all about dreaming big. Room Setup: Airy rooms with high-ceilings are the best locations for thinking big. Mentality: Any idea is fair game. Step 3 asks “WHY are we doing this?”

The IBM 5 in 5: Our Forecast of Five Innovations That Will Alter the Tech Landscape Within Five Years Every year IBM predicts the future of technology via the IBM 5 in 5 initiative–our forecast of five innovations that will help transform aspects of modern life, making the planet smarter, within the next five years. We assess not just the availability of a new technology but also the likelihood of its large-scale adoption. This year’s predictions: · People power will come to life · You will never need a password again · Mind reading is no longer science fiction · The digital divide will cease to exist · Junk mail will become priority mail Join the Twitter converation at #ibm5in5 Click here to vote on the coolest prediction. Making this kind of prediction is difficult. Why do they do it? Meyerson, who plays a role in the annual exercise, says the most useful thing about the process is that it requires IBMers to think holistically about innovation. We’ve been issuing the Next 5 in 5 predictions for the past six years. Predictions from other years have panned out as well.

Scenarios This scenario development process is based on the following principles: The highly prepared meeting. We interviewed a wide variety of people including all the participants in the first workshop ahead of time in order to understand the issues facing the Park and to solicit ideas about important actions, investments, changes in law and regulation, etc. that would be necessary for “good futures” to transpire. In this way, the participants were presented with a lot of ideas to work with and spent relatively little time getting started.Two-part definition of scenario. In this approach a scenario is divided into the endstate or outcome statement at the planning horizon (in this case 25 years from now) and a series of events that must occur or must not occur that lead us from the present to that outcome. Scenario: series of evens that lead to an endstate Back-casting: if your endstate has happened, what events must have happened (or not)? Like this: Like Loading...

The Next Transitions in the Technium What kinds of developmental thresholds would any planet of sentient beings pass through? The creation of writing would be a huge one. The unleashing of cheap non-biological energy is another. The invention of the scientific method is a giant leap. And the fine control of energy (as in electricity) for long-distant communications is significant as well, enabling all kinds of other achievements. * AI – There are many varieties of artificial intelligence, and no formal definition for any of them. * A-life — Likewise there are many types of artificial life possible, from derivatives of natural biological life, to a-life running on an alternative chemical base-pairs, to self-reproducing dry life more akin to nano-bots. * Methuselarity – Health care and science keep extending the average longevity of humans, and increasing the rate at which it is improving. * Memorex — Every bit of writing, music, photography, painting in civilization is digitized and recorded in a machine-readable way.

Methods of prospective > Softwares > Morphol : La prospective Morphological analysis aims to explore possible futures Morphological Analysis Aim Morphological analysis aims to explore possible futures in a systematic way by studying all the combinations resulting from the breakdown of a system. The aim of morphological analysis is to highlight new procedures or products in both technological forecasting and scenario building. Description of the method Morphological analysis is the oldest of the techniques presented in this toolbox. In fact, it was first developed by the American researcher F. • Phase 1 : Building a morphological space In this first phase, the system or function under examination is broken down into subsystems or components. • Phase 2 : Reduction of morphological space However, certain combinations and even certain families of combinations are unfeasible, e.g., incompatibility between configurations. Usefulness and limitations The first limitation of morphological analysis stems from the choice of components. Practical conclusions

Brian Vellmure - Google+ - How we choose to pay attention, and relate to information… This is a very interesting post by +Maria Popova Thanks +John Hagel "...So if information discovery plays such a central role in how we fuel our creativity and thus in our creative output, then information discovery is a form of creative labor in and of itself. And yet our current code of ethics for respecting and crediting this kind of labor is completely inadequate. #futureofwork #socbiz #socialbusiness 4 Trends Shaping the Emerging “Superfluid” Economy image by @EricaGlasier Humanity and technology continue to co-evolve at an ever increasing pace, leaving traditional institutions (and mindsets) calcified and out of date. A new paradigm is emerging, where everything is increasingly connected and the nature of collaboration, business and work are all being reshaped. In turn, our ideas about society, culture, geographic boundaries and governance are being forced to adapt to a new reality. While some fear the loss of control associated with these shifts, others are exhilarated by the new forms of connectivity and commerce that they imply. Transactions and interactions are growing faster and more frictionless, giving birth to what I call a “superfluid” economy. Business will not return to usual. Technological acceleration isn’t just a phrase. This may lead to technologies becoming so tiny that they simply fade into the background experience of our lives. So what? It is our choice to enable such a future or not. Like this:

Three New Required Roles for your company: (#2) Social Anthropologist In the first post of this series, we talked about listening for what people are saying about you, your brand, your market, your products and services, or market needs that your organization has an answer for. I intentionally didn’t dig into all the things you can do with that data – some are passive and some are active. The important part was listening. Turning that data into actionable insight is where the real magic can happen, but that’s a post for a different day. ;) A couple of weeks ago, well known social superwoman blogger Amber Naslund sent this surprised tweet out: It is very interesting indeed. Today, I’m going to turn our attention to the second required role for your company: The Social Anthropologist. I don’t know about you, but when I hear that phrase, it immediately brings to mind sleepy images of some British guy talking slowly and methodically on a Sunday afternoon about some displaced nomads in the bush of Botswana. But that’s not what I am talking about here. Like this:

The Meaning Organization By Umair Haque Welcome to the roaring teens. We’re in the aftermath of the worst economic crisis, many people argue, since the Great Depression. As mightily as governments, central banks, and scholars have labored, a jobless, fruitless, and suspiciously meaningless recovery has begun. Perhaps that's because the so-called Great Recession wasn't truly a recession at all. What if the downturn was actually a Great Transformation instead? Ponder, for a moment, a troublesome paradox: The noughties (2000–2009) were a lost decade for America. A better and very different global economy made up of novel, more beneficial industries, more purposive types of organizations, and more passionate work will bring radically more fruitful approaches to commerce, trade, and exchange. Consider an analogy: Just as we’re learning to improve yesterday’s internal combustion engine, radical innovators in the age of wisdom are learning to build better economic engines and novel, disruptive institutions. Harmony.

Funds Research at MIT Center for Digital Business on Emerging Social Workplace - Jun 7, 2011 TEANECK, N.J., June 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Cognizant (NASDAQ: CTSH), a leading provider of consulting, technology, and business process outsourcing services, today announced it has entered into a three-year agreement with the MIT Center for Digital Business (CDB) to fund research on the impacts of new technologies in the communications, information, media and entertainment (CIME) industries. The research program will focus on "Trends in Technology, Work, and Leadership Development in the CIME Sector: Emergence of the Social Workplace." Dr. Andrew McAfee, Principal Research Scientist and author of Enterprise 2.0, is the Principal Investigator of the research team, along with Dr. Erik Brynjolfsson, Director of the MIT Center for Digital Business, and Dr. "Business leaders in the CIME industries have faced tremendous uncertainty in the face of industry-shaping technologies and have been lacking a playbook to guide their strategies. About Cognizant Forward-Looking Statements SOURCE Cognizant