Turning from Individualism toward Interdependence

If our job as humans is to create the future we prefer, then the priority for the next decade may be to rediscover our interdependence.

This insight comes from participating with other futurists, alumni and past clients of the Institute of Alternative Futures at the institute's 40th anniversary seminar and celebration earlier this month. IAF Founder Clem Bezold expressed what I found in my seven years with the organization to be IAF’s defining vision:  “Our job as humans is to create the future we prefer.”

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The Future of Work Requires Associations to Lead

Most forward-thinking people have their eye on the future of work with some apprehension as we brace for increased complexity, automation, artificial intelligence, and new forms of work. In fact, ASAE ForesightWorks research identified at least six drivers of change explicitly exploring the future of work and several others that illustrate how associations might lead this future.

This is why a McKinsey Quarterly article entitled “Getting ready for the future of work” caught my eye. McKinsey shared insights from a gathering of thought leaders to assess the state of the workplace and explore potential solutions.

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Meeting the Future of Associations at ASAE

The annual conference of the American Society of Association Executives is a good place to search for evidence of how associations are changing, especially this year as the ASAE Foundation rolls out its new foresight research program, ASAE ForesightWorks.

The Foundation released three action briefs with a summary of the 41 drivers of change from the 2017 research in Toronto. Did I see evidence that the three drivers of change shared in a conference education session (virtualized meetings, aging world and anticipatory intelligence) point to changes ahead for many associations?  Did I see signs of the rising importance of the other 38 drivers? Yes and yet all we imagine will be possible is not yet happening.

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