The Age Of Resilience

In an online leadership course developed in 2016, I stressed the need for resilience and adaptability. The course, titled A Journey Through the Looking Glass, focused on an emerging world of complexity, uncertainty, and the unknown. We rarely heard the words resilience and adaptability spoken back then, but along came a pandemic to force them into our vocabulary. While our short-term focus obstructed our view, cracks were forming and accumulating in ways that were likely to put a premium on these two traits.

One of those cracks is described in detail in a new book titled The Age of Resilience. Author Jeremy Rifkin was an early influence on my thinking. In his book published in 2014, The Zero Marginal Cost society, he took a fascinating look at economic history. That look backward provided a window into possible economic futures. Now, eight years later, Rifkin positions a transformative vision for how our species will thrive on an unpredictable Earth. Through an organizational lens, I viewed resilience as the primary trait on a strategic foundation of automation and intelligence. Rifkin views it through the lens of the biosphere.

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The New Fire

I just finished reading the latest addition to my book library. The New Fire was written by Ben Buchanan and Andrew Imbrie. The book explores artificial intelligence (AI) through the lens of geopolitics, specifically, the prospects for democracy versus autocracy. A worrying possibility is highlighted in the book; that AI will do more for autocracy than democracy. In comparing artificial intelligence to fire, the authors make a comparison that I explored in a recent poll. Fire is very destructive, but as the authors state, it is also the basis for civilization. Humans learned to tame the destructive nature of fire, while harnessing its power. That is the precise analogy to AI that the book studies.

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Inventing The World We Can Proudly Leave To Our Kids

I first met Chunka Mui in 2017 after reading his book titled The New Killer Apps. I then had the pleasure of working with him on a thought leadership course, where he contributed to a panel discussion on driverless cars. Post course, he participated in a related Driverless Car Interview which you can view below.

In the fall of last year, Chunka contributed to another book titled A Brief History of a Perfect Future with co-authors Paul Carroll and Tim Andrews. The book is fascinating on several levels. It’s effective use of storytelling helps us envision the world of 2050. Its broad view will resonate with a broad segment of leaders, as it covers a future view of computing, communication, information, genomics, energy, water, transportation, healthcare, climate change, and trust.

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Geopolitical Forecasting

The growing convergence story promises to alter our view of possible futures. There are a number of likely shifts that make Geopolitics a critical piece of the story. These shifts add to the high degree of uncertainty reflected in the current environment. In light of this, evaluating geopolitical implications and their influence on the future is growing in importance. But how? I just finished a book titled Geopolitical Alpha that offers a perspective on how to improve forecast accuracy in the geopolitical domain.

The era of geopolitical ignorance is over. The days when investors and corporate decision-makers could be successful without much understanding of politics will be a footnote in the annals of history.

Marko Papic – Geopolitical Alpha
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Present Future

Time is the dimension of historians and futurists, of chroniclers of what was, and speculators of what may be. Here is a truth: In making any decision, we are by definition deciding what to do . . . next. We must choose amongst known possibilities and paths, simulate outcomes and consequences in our minds. Another truth: At any decision point, 100% of the information we have is based on the past, while 100% of the value and consequences of the decision we make lies in the future, which is inherently probabilistic and unknown

Guy Perelmuter, Present Future: Business, Science, and the Deep Tech Revolution

That quote comes from a recent book titled Present Future authored by Guy Perelmuter, Founder at GRIDS Capital. The book takes a look at history and the future. The foreward echoes one of my strong beliefs: “when it comes to our endlessly unfolding future, the only certainty is uncertainty, and the only way to reduce uncertainty is to have a deep sense of history and reliable clues to the future.” That foreward was written by Josh Wolf, Founder and Managing Director, Lux Capital. He describes the book as follows:

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The Changing World Order

Ray Dalio is the Co-Chief Investment Officer & Chairman of Bridgewater Associates, In making decisions, he has found history to be very instructive. This is a recurring theme that I write about often, as I view history as a key source of signals. I’ve included links that explore these signals below. In exploring possible futures, it is helpful to understand the patterns of history – and they really do rhyme. In the book The Fourth Turning, the authors describe what the cycles of history tells us about our next rendezvous with destiny. What intrigued me as a Futurist is the claim by the books authors that our past can indeed predict our future – it’s a compelling argument when viewed through the lens of these historical cycles.

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Post Corona: From Crisis To Opportunity

“I begin with two theses. First, the pandemic’s most enduring impact will be as an accelerant. While it will initiate some changes and alter the direction of some trends, the pandemic’s primary effect has been to accelerate dynamics already present in society.” – Scott Galloway

That is a quote from a book I just finished. Scott Galloway is a professor at New York University’s Stern School of Business, where he teaches brand strategy and digital marketing to second-year MBA students. In his new book, he looks at the world post corona. The book titled “Post Corona: From Crisis to Opportunity” has been added to my Book library. He points to remarkable things that have happened since the virus reared its ugly head, like: It took Apple 42 years to reach $1 trillion in value, and 20 weeks to accelerate from $1 trillion to $2 trillion (March to August 2020), and we registered a decade of ecommerce growth in eight weeks. Additionally, Tesla became not only the most valuable car company in the world, but more valuable than Toyota, Volkswagen, Daimler, and Honda combined.

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The World

When we look into the future and try to understand its path, we must consider the geopolitical sphere as a key area of influence. The WorldTo that end, I just added another book to my Book Library. The World: A Brief Introduction was written by Richard Haass, an American Diplomat. Per the book abstract, The World is designed to provide readers of any age and experience with the essential background and building blocks they need to make sense of this complicated and interconnected world.

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The Ecosystem Edge

I just finished another book and added it to my Book Library. Ecosystem Edge was written by Peter J. Williamson and Arnoud De Meyer. Ecosystem EdgeThe move towards ecosystems as an organizing principle for market activity has been a foundational piece of my research on the future of business. You can find that research here. The book goes into depth on the what, why, and how of ecosystems. Anyone looking for detailed guidance on how to execute in this ecosystem world, this is the book for you. Supported by several real-world examples, the authors explore the different aspects of succeeding in the ecosystem world. I highly recommend the book. The abstract is included below.

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