Designing The 21st Century Enterprise


Geopolitical, Economy & Ecology: Policy

"When the Group of Seven (the United States, Japan, West Germany, Britain, France, Canada, and Italy) held its fifteenth annual economic summit in Paris in July 1989, environmental issues got major attention for the first time. Some even called it the 'environmental summit.' The group pledged to work together to preserve the global environment, saying in its communiue: 'Decisive action is urgently needed to understand and protect the earth's ecological balance. We will work together to achieve the common goals of preserving a healthy and balance global environment in order to meet shared economic and social objectives.' This is part of the growing sense that a new erea of cooperation among all countries is required to deal with our common global environment. The world's preoccupation with defense . . . is being replaced by concern about the destruction of our natural environment, now our most common problem."
MEGATRENDS 2000, John Naisbitt and Patricia Aburdene

With increasing concern about the earth's ecological imbalance, as well as a growing awareness of the relationship between the global economy and the global environment, what policy issues will likely face the enterprise of the 21st century?

"In the two centuries since Smith published, most of what he wrote has been questioned and much has been amplified, elaborated and modified. But the one thing not questioned has been the same idea Smith himself failed to question: the old mercantilist tautology that nations are the salient entities for understanding the structure of economic life. . . Nations are political and military entities, and so are blocs of nations. But it doesn't necessarily follow from this that they are also the basic, salient entities of economic life or that they are particularly useful for probing the mysteries of economic structure, the reasons for rise and decline of wealth."
CITIES AND THE WEALTH OF NATIONS: Principles of Economic Life; Jane Jacobs, 1984

Your response

By 2020, what relationship to the global economic system will nations have?

"As in business, learning, de-learning, and re-learning has become a continuous process in every occupational category in the military. Training organizations are rising in the power pecking order within the various military services. . . One can imagine the day when computer-based training methods and technologies themselves become so valuable that armies try to steal them from one another. Third Wave generals understand that the army that trains the best, learns the fastest, and knows the most has a keen edge that can compensate for many shortfalls. Knowledge is the ultimate substitute for other resources."
WAR AND ANTI-WAR: Survival at the Dawn of the 21st Century; Alvin and Heidi Toffler, 1993

Your response

Where will most of the education and training of knowledge workers come from?

"In earlier days human beings often mistreated the world and 'got away with it.' People - some people - survived each environmental disaster, though the world as a whole was impoverished. The Tigris-Euphrates river system now supports only a fraction of the population that once flourished there. Bad managers 'got away with' criminal mismanagement, because in those days there was a lot of world and not much humanity (in both of two senses)."
FILTERS AGAINST FOLLY; Garrett Hardin, 1985

Your response

By 2020 what percentage of US land will be unusable or unable to support healthy life styles?

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