2021 Special Speaking Topic
For decades, Hollywood (and then Netflix) has flooded the public with visions of dread and dystopian futures. Doom and disaster continue to sell. It is no wonder that many people fear AI and robots – it always seems to end really badly for humans. Add the never-ending Covid-19 crisis, (de)globalisation, automation and geopolitical uncertainties to the mix, and the result is a wide-spread belief that the future is mostly bleak.
Yet the fact is that our world is not irrevocably destined to become a dehumanized hellscape ruled by AI, or some other Black-Mirror/Upload/Ex-Machina nightmare, and our future isn’t fixed – we create it with our (in)actions, every day. Have a look at the correct data (see below, as well) and you’ll find things are actually better than ever before, in many aspects (*Test your own preconceptions about how the world is doing at Gapminder).
The world is, in fact, improving at a rapid rate. Sure, the world’s progress in the past 30 years is not all just peachy and amazing – especially when seeing it in context with the current corona crisis. Yet we are well on the way of reducing extreme poverty and hunger, and chiselling away at many of the other woes that have plagued humanity since the dawn of time, including diseases, crime and war. Indeed, we have a lot of reasons to be optimistic about our progress. In the next decade, I think we will have most of the tools (i.e. science and technology) we need – so now we must acquire the telos (will, purpose and wisdom).
So what can you do, as an individual, an enterprise or an organisation, to make sure your future will indeed be bright? How will you develop a Future-Ready-Mindset? How will you turn these challenges/opportunities into positive action? If we are (or become) what we believe we can be, how do we change our beliefs and mindsets?
We are (and become) what we believe. The way we think about the future is often shaped by our experiences in the past, our assumptions about ‘how things work’ and generally how we see the world. But if we’ve learned anything in the last 10 years, it is that the Future is no longer just an extension of the past or the present (witness the dramatic resets in the music industry or the automotive & transportation business).
Once you recognise and embrace that – apart from all the challenges and setbacks – the future brings amazing new possibilities that just might be the complete opposite of today, then you can start imagining, exploring and realising the future you want.
What resources will you need, what skills will you need to sharpen, and what cultural changes will be required within your organisation? How can you make room for more playing and experimentation, and how can you engender more creativity, agility, resilience and tenacity?
In this impassioned talk, renowned futurist Gerd Leonhard shares his arguments for optimism along with actionable steps for how we – as individuals as well as collectives and organisations – can create a great future for all of us.
Are humans inherently good, or not? Are we capable of agreeing what kind of future we want? Do we have similar objectives?
If you believe in choosing hope and changing/building the world for the better by tackling some of the biggest challenges humanity has ever faced, consider booking this immersive, entertaining, and motivationally thought-provoking keynote today.
"Gerd was our leading keynote speaker at the Visionaries and Leaders forum “Steering Education: From Imagination to Impact” in Riga, Latvia. With his help, we set the tradition to look at and debate our education challenges at the highest visionary and futuristic level. He offered us an outstanding and absolutely inspirational new mindset-changing perspective for the future of education, focusing on the next 10 years' vision. Gerd’s keynote moved and shacked our educators' and politicians' audience by proposing to rethink the main aspects of work and revolutionize education in the light of high-tech development versus humanity. A lot of inspiration!"
Dita Traidas, Director
"Gerd is an inspirational and re-assuring voice of common sense and future focus. He makes sense of a near time reality that is full of uncertainty, excitement and challenge. I would recommend Gerd to any group looking to examine how their business can succeed in the next frontier."
Simon Baggs, President, Brand Protection
"A big Thank You to Gerd: your professionalism, great content, fantastic coordination and enthusiasm made our event a huge' success."
"Gerd has the ability to take you on a journey into possible futures without fear. A call for us all to spend time thinking about the future and being ready for it when it arrives – hugely inspiring and thought provoking. Everybody can benefit from listening and talking to this man!"
Simon Hocquard, Director General
"We invited Gerd for our primary guest speaker at “The Human-Centric Future” event, Online and in Milan in January 2021. Gerd’s extraordinary, inspirational vision of the future was much appreciated by our clients"
Elisa Robustelli, Sponsorship Manager
"Gerd Leonhard has delivered a highly acclaimed, thought provoking and insightful keynote speech on the Sustainable and Digital Transformation at our global DHL Auto-Mobility conference."
Fathi Tlatli, President Global Auto-Mobility
"Gerd really made a big difference to our event because when he speaks about the future changes, technology, behaviors, he worries about connecting all of these changes with the audience reality, showing that it is possible to succeed, as humans, in this new world. He connects to the audience in a way that we feel that there is space for both humans and technology to live together."
Patricia Bastos, Communications Director
"In our Annual Meeting, we had Gerd with us (virtually). This meeting's motto was "It is up to you", looking forward to BA Glass future. It was fundamental to count on Gerd participation to take us into the Future. Gerd did an exciting presentation around the opportunities and risks we have in hand, reminding us that asking "how the Future will be?" is the wrong question. "The Future will be what we will make of it!", he wisely said. Thank you Gerd, for your enormous inspiration."
Sandra Santos, CEO
"Gerd allows the audience to travel to and from the future. The result remains long after the conference, when you rewind his presentations after a few years, and see it happening in front of your eyes. I had the pleasure to hire Gerd when I was at Pestana Hotel Group, and this specific event reached the highest score ever in 4 decades. Gerd is a pleasure to work with, and I highly recommend his services."
Nuno Pires, CEO
"Working with Gerd was an excellent experience, and he definitely pushed our executives’ thinking forward. Not only did he outline major technological and societal trends affecting our business, he did so in a way that was engaging and personal"
Adam Carroll, VP, Global Talent Management
"CommunicAsia was truly honored to have Gerd Leonhard as one of our keynote speakers for this year. Gerd’s addition to the Summit has been breathtaking and inspirational. His visionary address on The Next 5 years in Global Digital Transformation truly captivated the audience. Thank you for being with us!"
Jaime Ng, Conference Director
"Your presentation was a huge success. You managed to scare delegates to death and give them hope at the same time – quite a feat and exactly what they needed! Thank you also for crafting your ideas so that it tied very directly into our business, rather than being just a rehash of a standard presentation."
Clive Viegas Bennett, CEO
The Future is better than we think!