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7th August 2015

Millennium Project releases "2015–16 State of the Future" report

The Millennium Project's newly-released "2015-16 State of the Future" confirms that the world is winning more than losing, but where it is losing is very serious.


millennium project 2015 2016 state of the future report


The "2015-16 State of the Future" report just released by The Millennium Project gives trends on 28 indicators of progress and regress; new insights into 15 Global Challenges; impacts of artificial intelligence, synthetic biology, nanotechnology and other advanced technologies on employment over the next 35 years; and how economic change is inevitable by 2050.

"This 'World Report Card' may have more data, information, intelligence, and wisdom about the future of the world than has ever been assembled in one report," says Jerome Glenn, CEO of The Millennium Project and lead author of the report. "It should be read in pieces and kept on your desk as a reference."

This is the 18th global assessment of the foreseeable future. It distils much of the leading research from UN organisations, national governments, think tanks, and insights from thought leaders around the world. This 300-page report includes over 50 charts and graphs. "It is what the educated world citizen should know," says Elizabeth Florescu, Director of Research for The Millennium Project and co-author of the report. Each "State of the Future" since 1997 builds on the last one, creating an accumulative and unique assessment of the future of the world.

Some of the key findings include:

  • The concept of work will change over the next generation or two; but global thought leaders are divided about the best policies to make a smooth transition.

  • By 2050, new systems for food, water, energy, education, health, economics, and global governance will be needed to prevent massive and complex human and environmental disasters.

  • Environmental security should be the focus of joint goals to build strategic trust between the US and China.

  • The 2015 State of the Future Index shows slow but steady improvement in general human welfare over the past 20 years and next 10 years — but at the expense of the environment and with worsening intrastate violence, terrorism, corruption, organised crime, and economic inequality.

  • The future can be much better than most pessimists understand, but it could also be far worse than most optimists are willing to explore.

  • Humanity has the resources to address its global challenges, but it is not clear that an integrated set of global and local strategies will be implemented together timely enough and on the scale necessary to build a better future.

"It is time for intolerance of irrelevant speeches and non-actions by leaders. The stakes are too high to tolerate business as usual," declares Glenn.

A 14-page executive summary is freely available to download.

The Millennium Project is a global participatory think tank, connecting 56 Nodes around the world that identify important long-range challenges and strategies, and initiate and conduct foresight studies, workshops, symposiums, and advanced training. Its mission is to improve thinking about the future and make it available through a variety of media for feedback, to accumulate wisdom about the future for better decisions today. In addition to the annual "State of the Future" reports, it produces the "Futures Research Methodology" series, the Global Futures Intelligence System (GFIS), and special studies. Over 4,500 futurists, scholars, business planners, and policy makers who work for international organisations, governments, corporations, NGOs, and universities have participated in The Millennium Project's research, since its inception, in 1992. The Millennium Project was selected among the top ten think tanks in the world for new ideas and paradigms by the 2013 and 2014 University of Pennsylvania's GoTo Think Tank Index, and as a 2012 Computerworld Honors Laureate for its contributions to collective intelligence systems.


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