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TiE San Diego
San Diego, CA. USA
December 4, 2001

Predictions for the 21st. Century

Speaker : Jim Pinto
Managing Partner,
San Diego, CA. USA

In these uncertain and fast-moving times, it’s tough to predict 5 months or 5 years, let alone a century. But, let's discuss trends and make some broad-brush guesses.

India’s place in the next century -the second most-populous nation (1 b), the largest democracy, English-speaking, highly educated top-level, fast-expanding middle class, the most number of Muslims in any country.

In the US, the Indian minority is remarkably accomplished. About 60% of silicon-valley startups were founded by or have Indians in the founding group - mostly technical, but some management talent. Major startups like Hotmail. Nasdaq companies like WIPRO and Infosys from Bangalore, my hometown. Indians are at the top in major companies like Computer Associates and United Airlines. The list is endless - but let’s not be xenophobic. Most Indians in America are Americans first. The "eclectic" nature of America.

Peter Drucker : A new society is emerging. New institutions, ideologies and problems

New demographics:

  • Growing number of older people will be working - 50% of employees will be part-time
  • Replacement rate of 2.2 births per woman - most developed countries have fallen below - Germany is 1.3. Half the population of Germany (#3 economy in the world) will be over 65. Birthrates are even lower in many parts of Europe and Japan. India is at 3.1.
  • Retirement age will soon be 75.
  • American population will grow - primarily because of immigrants, and their higher birthrate. America is "tuned" to immigration, and has learned to accommodate immigrants.
The new knowledge society:
  • Borderless: upward mobility for everyone; Brain, not brawn.
  • 20th century saw decline of agriculture- farming in the US is less than 2%. We now have farming subsidies.
  • Manufacturing : Was 35-40% early 20th century, is now about 15%, will decline further - to 10-12% in most developed countries. More production, less workers. We’ll see more protectionism and subsidies. Will follow the path of farming.
The future of the Corporation:
  • Several different models - each segment will have different objectives.
  • The Corp will have Mission and Vision.
  • The job of the CEO is “un-doable”. CEO will be replaced teams, with HR being equal to Finance etc.
Three technology laws are driving the new economy:
  • Moore's law : Computer power doubles every 18 months
  • Gilder's law : Bandwidth doubles every 12 months
  • Metcalfe's law : Effectiveness increases exponentially with connectivity
Individuals and companies worldwide are now electronically linked. The rules of the game are changing. The driving principles of the new economy are not new, but taken together they constitute a revolution in the rules of business.

The Human Genome Project:
A significant new inflection point with revolutionary and startling consequences for humans and life as we know it. The changes in the next century will be more significant than past several millennia.

Lifespan extension:
Technology will enhance biology through the virtual elimination of disease and significant increase in longevity. There will be several new population segments.

Some people suggest that synthetic intelligence will inevitably exceed human capabilities within the next few decades. Fringe-thinkers are already discussing trans-human and post-human societies. How will Abbott/Ross products nourish new and different types of humans? Or, is that unthinkable?

Get ready for change:
The new millennium brings with it enormous changes in all areas of human consciousness. Significant philosophical, ethical, moral, legal, sociological and spiritual questions must be answered, as we move forward in a new century and millennium.

You might like to read Jim Pinto's previous writings on future trends.

Feel free to get in touch with Jim Pinto. The best way to get in touch is by e-mail. You'll always receive a reply within a couple of days.

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Telephone (direct-line) : (858) 353-JIMP (5467)

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