On The Road with Alan- The Future & Farewell Chicago
Today was the Futures Conference in Chicago. About 55 firm leaders from architecture, engineering and construction were gathered by the consulting firm FMI/AMI. It was an unusual opportunity to meet and speak with the leaders of some of the leading firms in the US. The thrust of the conference was that no one can predict the future, but that if you study probable scenarios you will be better prepared to deal with the multiplicity of futures that might arise. The futures that were developed into scenarios were:
• The Perfect World
• Struggle for Stability
• Building Walls
• Controlled Environment
Almost all agreed that the Struggle for Stability was the most like our current reality though there were elements of all the scenarios in what we are currently dealing with and what we might have to deal with in the future.
The keynote speaker was Watt Wacker (yes that’s for real and he is not a PG&E spokesman for high efficiency light bulbs). In the midst of mostly suits and ties he was the guy with the frizzy blonde fright doo, shorts and Teva sandals. He was really quite good. Between high-level corporate futurists gigs he does things like cook for a hunting pack outfit in Montana and drives an airport shuttle for Avis, just so he can look at the world from a variety of perspectives. When I get a little time, I’ll boil down the essence of the day. All in all it confirmed that we are generally doing the right things and that felt good.
This is it for Chicago. Tomorrow is Orlando and the Health Design Conference. Whew!