Every now and then I look back to understand how the world thought of new innovations. I see some unexpected failures, which no one had expected. I, for one, did not anyhow. Think of Google Glass. Where are the hordes of people walking around with this sophisticated pair of glasses on their nose? They are nowhere to be found, as the device meets a strongly negative reaction from the audience. Consumers fear that their privacy will be violated by others. What does this mean for the year ahead? Forget for a moment the calibrated success stories of smart watches or life-prolonging wonder drug C60 that shook the medical world, but look at the innovation dilemmas that are coming our way. For there is the greatest uncertainty.
Jobs are now part of the fluid, make-it-up-as-you-go-along economy. They are beyond Government control. We, the workforce, have become blasé about the underlying trend towards more lay-offs and more part-time work. But as more people face lay-offs should we be rethinking how we deal with it? Maybe it is an area rich for ideation culture. I hope HYPE will follow up and launch a challenge, along the lines I will suggest below.
First to job losses. Microsoft recently announced plans to lay off 18,000 people. Barclays Bank announced 12,000 layoffs, against a wider background of redundancy announcements in finance. Up until May 2013 the US Bureau of Labor Statistics issued monthly mass layoff data. The service is now discontinued but here is its last summary:
Cities and regions have an abundance of options for marking themselves out as innovative. The problem is, most of their tactics are easy to copy and most are part of a trend. The creative cluster, the industrial cluster, the science park, an open data initiative, or the smart city. Glance at an inward investment document and you are likely to see one of these mentioned. In a world that now seems to be hovering between innovation, disruption or demise, cities need to think differently.
Topics: Social Trends
Earlier this year The Economist analyzed a trend dubbed the onrushing wave – or the wave of technological progress expected to accelerate the automation of work. Adding some figures to their observations, the editors predicted that jobs in 47% occupational categories ran the risk of being automated in the near future. Jobs like: accountancy, legal work, technical writing... Thanks to LEGO enthusiasts, not even DJing is safe anymore.
Openness is over. Being closed or private is the new black. A shame for advertisers, really. And you may think this trend is so far from reality, especially taking into account the recent news of Facebook acquiring Whatsapp. Yet, it is definitely the emerging trend right now. I want to dialogue on the disruption of openness. With disruption I mean the changes of scale that are bound to happen in the near future.
Topics: Social Trends
Let’s face it; organizations undergo unavoidable rituals including reorganizations, layoffs, cost cutting and change of CEO. Behavioral economics theories help explain our disappointment as loss avoidance theory: a certain loss feels worse than that of an equal gain. As a result, we naturally tend to forget some of those positive business rituals including bonuses, company lunches and team-building events. However, as times are changing – and they are not getting any more luxurious – companies have to adapt, and it is probably better to go through it together and keep a positive attitude.
Founded in 2003 by TED fellow Jessica Mayberry, Video Volunteers is an international not for profit media organization that empowers the voices of the world's unheard (and often poorest) communities. It does so by equipping women and men in underdeveloped areas with the journalistic and creative skills they need to create impactful media productions on the issues that matter to them the most. From struggling educators, local government corruption and slum clearances to tribal rights (i.e. village independence threatened by corporations), deforestation and illegally privatized water supply issues, video activists of all ages learn to expose underreported yet crucial tales. Training, access to a flip camera, a sharing platform and eagerness to investigate, are the basic tools volunteers employ to retrieve valuable news content. But content is only a fraction of the story – above all, volunteers learn to take action and right the wrongs of poverty, injustice and inequality by sharing the footage they create.
If this is the first time you’re hearing about Tinder, I promise it won’t be the last.
When you ask famous entrepreneurs or innovators in which sectors to look for the new trends, likely they will say where the fun, young, and edginess is. Science, yep. Tech, yes sir. The market for love is certainly also one of these places and has always proven to be a good hotbed for new innovations. Remember VHS and Video 2000, the rise of the HD video, Viagra, etc. Currently, a new wave of change has sparkled the business of matchmaking. Think about Lulu, Grindr, Bang with Friends (no explanation needed), Coffee Meets Bagel, The Inner Circle, Kisstagram and…. Tinder.
Topics: Social Trends