Our Brave New World – United Way CLIC – Nikolas Badminton Futurist Keynote

– Said, we have the
great honor of welcoming an award winning futurist, which really is the
coolest job title on Earth. He’s here to give us his
vision for the future and how it’s changing and how we really need to
be keeping up with the pace. Please help me welcome Nikolas Badminton. ♪ Go big or go, go, go. ♪ ♪ Go big or go home, go, go. ♪ ♪ Go big or go home, go, go. ♪ – Okay, good morning. – [Crowd] Good morning. – (chuckles)
Come on, good morning. – [Crowd] Good morning. – Okay, great, perfect. So, so, yesterday I get a phone call and, and it’s like, “Okay,
we’re looking for a futurist.” My agent, my agent texts
me, I get on a phone call by 4:00 yesterday afternoon. I have two keynotes prepared, this is the first one. I’m gonna do another
one later on, as well. But, but really they were like, “Okay, do you know United Way?” “Yes I know United Way. “My, my girlfriend’s father “worked for United Ways
for a number of years.” So that’s a good thing. I’ve learned so much today that’s amazing, what, what Brian and everyone’s
been talking about today. Hugely thrilled to be here. I’ve worked with over 300
companies in my, in my lifetime, and I work with companies
to help them understand where the future’s going, how to be prepared for the
changes that are coming in life through technology, through
the changes in society, and what we can do to
be a part of that world. And really, this is why
the presentation is called The Brave New World. We have to be brave, we
have to step forward, we have to really, you know,
look towards the future with some certainty around
what’s going to happen. I, I look out five, ten,
twenty years into the future. I’m not, I’m less accurate
as I look out further. You know, if I look out
three to five years, I can tell you with, with
a great deal of certainty the things that are gonna change the world and I’m gonna highlight
some of them today. But as I look out further,
it’s more speculative. But if you understand
where we’re likely to go, we’re gonna have more
ability to change the world because we can set plans in place today that set a foundation. And United Way is already along that way with digital transformation,
looking at data, looking, the connections that
you have around the world. And it’s so great to see people from all
over the world here. But really, when I, when
I talk about the future, I kinda like to look at the past as well. So, we like to see the industrial revolutions
that have gone before us. So, everything changes with communication and transportation and energy. They’re the three dimensions of change when we look at industrial revolutions. So, we went from steam to electricity in the early 1900s, and, and then into the
computing era in the 1980s, and now we’re in a world of huge change in the fourth
industrial revolution, cyber physical systems,
sentences and data, the internet. Everything’s connected. And data in the world is growing as stronger than
we’ve ever been before. The most powerful companies in the world, the five top most powerful
companies in the world, they run on data because
data is a resource that is constantly is being generated. And those five companies
are worth $4.5 trillion, which makes them, you now,
if you change that to G.D.P., makes them the fifth
largest company in the, country in the world. Just think of the influence
you can have in the world and this is the route of
change that’s happening. But I like to just say, you know, here’s a couple of examples about when we kinda get things wrong and we don’t expect change
to be happening quickly. So, back in the 1900s in New York City, where this picture’s taken, it was predominantly horses
and carraiges, right? Can anyone see where the, where
the car is in this picture? There’s the car. One single car. Fast forward 13 years. Can anyone see where the
horse is in this picture? There’s no horses. When the car was introduced they said, “We just need more horses.” But then that technology catches on fire because you can get places more quickly, you have an abundance
of gasoline from oil, and, and the economy changed, and communications
changed at the same time, the industrial revolution there. – [Crowd] (laughs) – And then, April the third 1973, (chuckles) this guy makes a phone
call for the first time. The first cell phone call
from downtown Manhattan to Bell Labs in Jersey. Right? And who would’ve understood
where we are today? Is there anyone in the audience that does not have a cell phone? Right? I get no one saying that
they don’t have a cell phone except for security, security people. People that do cyber security, they’re like, “I don’t touch them.” – [Crowd] (laughs) – But today, we’re in
a world where by 2020 there will be more than six billion smart phones in the world. That’s more people who have
access to mobile communication than actually use toothbrushes. It’s a very strange stat that I roll out. – [Crowd] (laughs) – (laughs) How’s that people brushed
their teeth today? No.
– [Crowd] (laughs) – (chuckles) But we’ve now got access
to this technology and we’ve got influences in the crowd and they can generate 4K
video, upload it to YouTube and get a million views in like six hours. Please do that with me. That would be great. But with this world to accelerate, and then it’s getting much quickly. Now we’ve got a change
of pace in the world where we no longer know what normal is, and there’s a new normal. And as I’ve met lots of
inspirational speakers, and innovators, the people
building technology, and building the new world, I see some incredible examples of what some people’s vision is leading us to understand
the new world to be. This is a video by a British researcher called Keiichi Matsuda, and he’s saying the
phones are gonna disappear and we’re gonna wear headsets and glasses that are gonna allow us to overlay all of the data that we
need to see in the world, as will walking down the street. This video was actually filmed down in Medellin, in Columbia. Post-production put
visual effects in there, but imagine this world of
just overwhelming data, augmented reality. I’m excited about this, but I kinda think that we’re
gonna be wandering around, just literally looking to the sky, and we’re not gonna
understand what’s happening, and then suddenly the
Coca-Cola polar bear’s gonna hop next to you and go, “Hi.”
– [Crowd] (laughs) – “Buy some Coke.” And then, the world gets strange. I mean, this is a vision. This isn’t happening today. It’s coming. People are putting billions
of dollars into that world. This is happening today. Self driving vehicles. Why, we’re solving a human problem. We’re not good drivers. – [Crowd] (laughs) – I wish it was funny, 1.3 million people a year die
because of bad human driving. If we can even reduce that by 1% by introducing new technology, that’s a good thing. That’s a lot of people who are
still gonna be walking around and with us providing
value into the world. But this is, this is weird, I mean, with this picture still
got a steering wheel in it. Imagine there’s no steering wheel, in fact you don’t all
have to be sat forward, and you would literally, like
hanging out in an office, on the way, or you’re may
be having a nap, you know? Hands up, who would be really
comfortable doing that today? There’s lots of,
(chuckles) okay, we’ll all meet in the corner and talk about the new
world of self driving cars. – [Crowd] (laughs) – There’ll be three of us, okay. – [Crowd] (laughs) – And this is the new normal. Landing rockets, right? We look at billionaire
enterprenurs like Elon Musk and we’re like, “That guy’s crazy, “and what’s he saying on Twitter,” and whatever. Elon Musk lands rockets,
and he changes the world through electric vehicle technology, and he gives access to people, to all of the patents
that he has around that. So, we create acceleration. The new world is rockets
landing, rockets taking off. Eventually the new world
will be lunar calling these. Eventually the new world will be research expeditions to Mars, and then interstellar travel. I’m excited about this. And that’s why I say that we
are in the age of acceleration. We’re goin’ faster than ever before. How can we, how can we,
like, keep a grip on that? How can we, how can we
keep pace with that? Well, it’s very simple. We just need to look at
what we need to do every day and do the small things to
accept technology into our lives, accept the human connection
that comes from that. But understand that fundamentally, we’re people that need to connect, and we need to do business, we need to have impact in the world. Most recently, and, last month, I went to Songdo, South Korea, and I was flown down there
by the United Nations Climate Change Secretariat, and I gave an opening keynote to a week called Resilience Frontiers. We were trying to come up with new ideas about how we can build a resilient society because the inevitibility that in 2030 we’re gonna be a raised
temperature in the world that’s gonna cause climate catastrophy. There’s gonna be more hurricanes, there’s gonna be more floods, coastlines are gonna change. And there was this amazing
evolutionary biologist, Professor Choi, and he
was saying about how we are no longer homo
sapiens, or just homo sapiens. Humans with wisdom, that’s
what homo sapien means. The wisdom that we have from
experience and knowledge and the data that we access
and the actions that we take. But we are actually
stepping into a new world where we have deeper connection and understanding that we
are connected to everyone, there’s expression, there’s empathy, this powers us into a
world of homo symbious, the symbiotic relationship between us, each other, the communities,
the animals in the world, the ecosystems that we need to protect, and we need to, we need
to take action to help the communities that we need to go into, the technologies that we use to help us. I love that term, homo symbious. That our connection and our empathy is gonna take us further than ever before. And moving on from the
age of acceleration, I don’t think that that
really does the job that we need it to do. I think that we are truly
in the age of empathy. Empathetic understanding
about how the world works, what we all need, understanding that our sisters and brothers are
sometimes gonna need our help. And that we’re here to step up and we can look to the future and say, “Okay, don’t worry. “It’s tough today. “We’re gonna get somewhere
different tomorrow, “next year, five years,
ten years, twenty years.” Giving them hope. That’s what I do as a futurist. I give people hope that the new world is not gonna be so drastically dystopian, like some people think. That is not my agenda. But the age of empathy will usher in this new hope for a world that’s gonna be different and very powerful. (takes breath) Now when we look at change, and people banding the
word change and disruption and trying, like G us up
to do something different. I think it’s very simple, we have to change because change is inevitable. We either choose to change or
change is gonna happen to us. So, I’ve never stood still in my life. I’ve changed my career five times, I’m doing something
hugely interesting now, I try and step forward, I work with new clients all the time, I step forward into charity
and charitable organizations. I really, really try and make
a difference in the world. And I know next year I’m
gonna be operating differently because change is inevitable. So, the question is, are
you ready for change? It’s not easy to look
to the future with hope, but you have to. And really, there’s a lot
of opportunity to understand how we’re gonna be different tomorrow, five years time, ten years
time, twenty years time. And that’s it. We’ve stood in the brave new world today, but it’s not the technology that’s brave or the data’s that brave,
it us that are brave, and the actions that we take
to have empathetic connection, to use bold terms like I love you, and everything’s gonna be okay, or I’ve got your back, or don’t worry, we can
get a plan together. Because five, ten, twenty
years down the line, you’re still gonna have
a place in this world and this is the world
that we’ve built together. Thank you very much. – [Crowd] (clapping) – Thank you, my gosh. Thank you Nik. I don’t know about all of you, I have a thousand questions for you that I want to ask you
before the robot revolution takes us all down.
– Sure. – But we’re gonna ask you those questions when you do a keynote, which
is happening, I believe, over there in the Momentum Theater. – Yup.
– At 12:15. – Indeed.
– So, Nik is gonna be back with tons of information. Go to his keynote, ask him all the questions
you have as well. Nik Badminton everybody. – Thank you, thank you.
– Thank you, thank you. – Thank you very much.

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