What futurists (or “futurologists”) do is to help people plan and prepare for the future, as opposed to offer predictions about the future. This can involve looking at future trends, notably about new technologies and technology trends, and a lot more besides.
If you’re looking for a conference speaker, a keynote speaker, or a workshop presenter or facilitator on this topic, the examples below represent some of the keynote speeches or workshop presentations I’ve given as a futurist speaker in the past. But each presentation is created specifically to suit your needs. If you don’t see a presentation about the future that would work for your conference, by all means contact me, and we’ll see if we can create one specifically for you.
The Future Breaks Wide Open: What’s Ahead for Energy & the Environment
Conventional wisdom has been saying that the incremental demand from the Rapidly Developing Countries (RDCs) like China and India, added to the steady, but slower growth in demand from the developed countries, must inevitably push the price of oil substantially higher, even to $200/bbl. This, in turn, would help push renewable energy and more efficient uses of energy for heating, production, transport, and cars.
But there are several issues on the horizon that may shatter this conventionally accepted complacency. First is the potential that shale oil could do to the oil industry what shale gas did to the natural gas industry. The United States is already expected to become first self-sufficient, then a net exporter of oil, and has shale oil reserves in excess of 1.5 trillion barrels.
Next, China’s growth will inevitably slow, and keep slowing because of its rapidly aging population. The One Child rule, instituted in 1978, means that China’s population may peak in absolute numbers some time around 2025, and then begin to decline. Meanwhile, it’s labor force is already declining, which means its potential growth will slow. As a result, it’s demand for commodities, especially oil, will likewise slow.
In developed countries, consumer behavior is changing because of demographics, technology, and peer pressure. The boomer generation is approaching retirement – gradually – with the result that they won’t be commuting to work, and will be driving less, potentially much less. Young people are demonstrably less likely to own a car and drive that their parents. This is partly due to a switch in social perception from one where owning a car was cool, to one where owning smartphones and iPads is cool, and owning a car is damaging to the environment. Shared ownership, through companies like Zipcars, makes is easy to have access to a car without the expenses of ownership, and given that young people are more likely to live in urban areas, and less likely to have well-established, and well-paying, jobs, the economics of owning a car are much reduced.
And, of course, as goes oil so goes the energy industry as a whole. Cheap oil changes the economics of sustainable and renewable energy, and makes the reduction of greenhouse gases much, much harder. But all is not lost, for earlier investments in renewable energy are beginning to pay dividends, and because the number of people concerned about extreme weather events – and hence, climate change – is growing.
Richard Worzel is a business visionary, a Chartered Financial Analyst, and one of today’s leading futurists. In this overview of the seismic shifts coming to the energy industries, he lays out what’s possible, what’s probable, and how green activists and organizations should prepare for what’s to come.
How Food Producers Can Contribute to a Greener Society: Breaking the Carbon Habit Without Breaking the Bank
With the dramatic fall in the price of oil, it would be tempting to assume that the pressure to go green has disappeared. That would be a mistake, as the facts of climate change are still very much in evidence. This leaves the question: how can we, as individuals as well as producers, contribute to a greener society? Richard Worzel is a Chartered Financial Analyst, a strategic planner, best-selling author, and one of today’s leading futurists. In this presentation, he:
- Outlines the critical issues relating to climate change, and humanity’s part in it;
- Identifies the ways in which we are contributing to climate change; and
- Talks about the ways in which we can change the harm we do without destroying our businesses, of ways of going green while making it a profit-contributing process instead of a profit-draining one.
To finish off, Richard will outline a technique for identifying concrete new ways of improving efficiency, in order to benefit both profits and the environment.
Green Without Guilt: Social Responsibility that Pays
At the end of the 20th Century, public interest in environmental issues was on the wane. Today, public opinion is well past the tipping point, and despite the economic chaos, organizations are scrambling to catch up. What this means is that leading the field in green issues can be both a strategic and a tactical competitive advantage in tomorrow’s business world. Consider that:
Wal-Mart, the world’s biggest retailer, is not only talking about being green, but putting their money where its mouth is to the tune of half a billion dollars to cut down on waste, increase energy efficiency, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
General Electric, a role-model for hard-driving corporate growth and profitability, is now aggressively pursuing green technologies, products, and services through their ‘Ecoimagination’ campaign.
Citibank has announced that it is investing $50 billion to reduce its carbon footprint 10% by 2011. At this level of commitment, you know it’s not a public relations guesture, but a hard-nosed business investment.
Richard Worzel is one of today’s leading futurists, a strategic planner, and a Chartered Financial Analyst. In this broad-ranging view of the rapidly emerging Green Economy, he talks about what’s to come, and how you can do well by doing good, including:
- The issues surrounding climate change, real and perceived;
- The potential costs of climate change, both in the marketplace, and in the environment;
- The issues of ‘peak oil’, energy alternatives, and whether energy actually will be in short supply, or if we are facing another oil glut;
- The question of whether ‘going green’ is more than just a PR issue; and
- What are the bottom line benefits of going green?
Finally, Richard will introduce conferees to a methodology for inventing improvements in the efficiency of their operation, including how to use an Opportunity Matrix to enhance your ability to innovate and enhance profits. You will walk away with ideas and tools you can use immediately in your operations to reduce your environmental footprint – and simultaneously enhance your bottom line!