On Fortieth Anniversary of Alvin Toffler's Future Shock, Toffler Associates Announces Forces that will Drive Change over Next Forty Years

"40 for the Next 40" details key drivers of politics, technology, economics, environment and society in 2050

Oct 14, 2010, 09:00 ET from Toffler Associates

WASHINGTON, Oct. 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Toffler Associates today announced forty forces that will drive change between now and 2050.  The announcement kicked off the inaugural Future States Forum commemorating the 40th anniversary of the publication of "Future Shock," Alvin Toffler's groundbreaking work that forecast many of the trends we are living amidst today.  

Leaders of business, government and the non-profit sector are gathering at Future States Forum 2010 at a private club in Washington D.C. to honor Alvin Toffler's myriad achievements and to exchange ideas about how the next forty years of change will unfold.  Attendees include Steve Case, J.D. Power III and scores of other executives, authors and thinkers who are helping to shape the future of society and commerce.  

"Forty years ago, Alvin and Heidi Toffler recognized that change was rapidly accelerating," said Deborah Westphal, managing partner of Toffler Associates.  "Today, we are in the midst of a revolutionary transformation that will dramatically alter the way we live and work.  The silver lining is that businesses, non-profits and governments can take tangible steps today so that they are prepared for tomorrow and the next forty years."

Toffler Associates' "40 for the Next 40" describes the forces of change that will yield significantly different landscapes in 2050.  The report, released today, identifies influential drivers that will have implications across five broad sectors: political, technological, social, economic and environmental.  

Water Filters and Peace

Among its many findings, the report predicts that advances in water filtration will reduce global conflict.   By solving the growing need for potable water, Toffler Associates foresees that water-starved nation-states will have compelling new reasons to lay down their arms.

Politically, the report expects that the number of women in national leadership positions will increase at an unprecedented rate.  It also foresees "hyper-empowered" individuals who will create a radically different future as they continue to gain access to knowledge, technology and finances previously attainable only by nation-states.  

The report also pinpoints 'philanthro-capitalists' who are expected to eclipse national and multi-national organizations in influence on many global issues.

Dealing with the "Obsoledge"

With regard to the economy, Toffler Associates expects that every chunk of knowledge will eventually become obsolete.  The firm has coined the term "obsoledge" to refer to knowledge's extremely limited shelf life.  

The report anticipates that mass production will be replaced by on-demand custom manufacturing of highly complex products and services.  As a result, small, agile companies will be able to compete effectively with large manufacturers.  It also anticipates that companies will increasingly turn away from creating products and instead host marketplaces and charge to connect consumers with producers.

To view the full report, please visit http://www.toffler.com/newsroom.html.

About Toffler Associates

Toffler Associates was created to change the world. The firm serves as a catalyst for change, creating successful futures for clients through uncommon knowledge.

Toffler Associates' approach is different:  it starts in the future and looks back to see what is really driving change. It combines forward-looking methodologies, in-depth industry knowledge and powerful insights gained through a network of global experts to turn analysis into action. In so doing, Toffler Associates helps clients create enduring success by better understanding the forces of change around them and by preparing them for what the future will demand.

As trusted advisors, Toffler Associates gives organizations across industries the confidence and clarity of purpose that can come only from a firm command of what lies ahead. By plotting courses that help guide heads of state and captains of government and industry, Toffler Associates enables them to lead society and the world to a better future. 

Toffler Associates is headquartered in Manchester, Mass. with a national Capitol region office in Reston, Va. The company has advised clients in the transportation, aerospace, information technology and defense markets, as well as with federal agencies in Defense and Intelligence, associations and not-for-profit institutions. For more information, visit www.toffler.com.

SOURCE Toffler Associates