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Building meaningful futures - Issue #8


human works design - building meaningful futures

January 29 · Issue #8 · View online

'human works' empowers the game-changers of tomorrow to build meaningful futures. This newsletter is for leaders and change-makers, who want to elevate humanity by living consciously, designing conscious business that have a purpose with sustainable profit, and contributing to better systems for the diverse communities in our society, for future generations and for our planet.

When Brian Eno gets interpreted by US right-wingers for his Guardian interview as supportive of the new US president, you know that the world is really turning upside down. Luckily Brian took to Facebook to clarify his position:
“We now see political careers built upon lies and deceit and encouraged by openly biased media organisations, more concerned about revenue and ratings than giving the public real information. It’s this whole system that has to change: not just who leads the government but something deeper and more fundamental in our political and social processes. Democracy assumes an informed public: it doesn’t work if the media are corrupt. Changing the faces at the top doesn’t alter anything if the whole machinery beneath them stays the same - the rich become the super-rich, the middle class stagnates and the poor get poorer. (…) Trump has proven beyond doubt that the system is broken, so let’s fix it.”
As bad as things may look after one week of Trump’s policies becoming reality, the future is in our hands and we have the ability and the opportunity to not just fix the broken system but to (re)DESIGN our own future. 
The retreat of the global company, the biggest business idea of the past three decades is in deep trouble. And it’s not only because of the threat of protectionism, according The Economist.
But that’s not all…
The same way Western corporations outsourced manufacturing jobs to the east and China in the 80s and 90s, the same way they will choose for technological progress creating further unemployment. It’s just against corporate DNA to not go for more efficiency and profit.
As humans, it looks more and more apparent that we’re in the wrong system design. So, the questions we need to ask ourselves are not about how to bring back the lost jobs or to keep finding solutions to existing problems - for the sake of creating a couple more new jobs (with all due respect to the ones creating them) - but to reinvent a society without jobs, or the notion we have of those now, and to redesign the concepts we have of the interpretation of work and remuneration, for example.
There will be still jobs for the STEM elite for a while in the current system, but we need to think how we can design a different society than the one we’re currently in with the elite on one side, and too many uneducated people who cannot think for themselves, take care of themselves or can create employment for themselves, on the other. And we need to do this together and prepare our children for a different future. 
When looking at some of the videos from the Davos meeting last week (see links below), it’s revealing to witness business leaders in charge, they seem to have lost their moral compass and forgot that the future is not anymore about more power or more profits but it’s about PEOPLE, their values, health and wellbeing, comfort and security, cultural connections and ethical codes. 
Old values are crumbling down in front of our eyes every day… 
IBM CEO Ginni Rometty revealed the 3 guiding principles for ethical AI: purpose, transparency and skills. Few words about human values or ethics. Marc Benioff, CEO of, warned sombrely of the “digital refugees” that would be created by AI and said there is no clear path forward.
How can we keep accepting living in societies where the elite is moving further ahead creating further inequality, with politicians in charge who’s only agenda it is to keep nurturing that gap, while we all are watching the downfall of humanity from behind our screens?
Google co-founder Sergey Brin was the only one who expressed hope for more and more creative and meaningful ways for people to spend their time due to technological unemployment:
“You do see more people that have been freed up over the last couple of hundred years to do work that is more about thinking about or creating things … and I would hope to see that trend continue. It’s important for people to have freedom to study, financial opportunity to study, and to get meaning in addition to work being an important way in which we exchange money. People find profound meaning in their day-to-day jobs and that’s an important thing for us to preserve.”
A different world to be designed… The task looks huge and the change will not happen overnight but we need to start now, there is no time to loose. To me, it sounds like Star Trek all over again :)
So, let’s get started. I’m working on a couple of ideas. One of them is to start a think tank group of people who’d like to start taking action in their respective fields. Who’s in? Send me a note if you’re interested to start a conversation.
This week, I urge you to view (or watch again) the Four Horsemen, written and directed by Ross Ashcroft, an award winning independent feature documentary which lifts the lid on how the world really works. As we will never return to ‘business as usual’ 23 international thinkers, government advisors and Wall Street money-men break their silence and explain how to establish a moral and just society.
And remember All is Full of Love
Have a great week.

Socratic Design
Socratic Design · Istanbul - YouTube
Socratic Design Workshop @ Mobile World Congress #MWC17 at Makers of Barcelona
Get in touch if you’d like to setup a workshop in your city.
My Events during Mobile World Congress
Mobile Sunday 2017 with, 26 Feb 2017
IoT Stars – THE Internet of Things Networking Event during #MWC17
The House of Beautiful Business
Public Sphere Philosophical Salon
The same evening in the same building, I’m organising a philosophical salon in partnership with The Public Sphere on the same topic.
How has technology changed the way we form communities and communicate with others? How has it effected our personal relationships, understandings of social decorum, and communicative behaviour? What are the problems of technology in the social sphere that have already manifested and how can they be overcome? What are the possibilities of these technologies in strengthening community and positive social interaction and how could they be improved and elaborate upon? These are a few of the questions we will consider in this salon.
Ping me if you’d like to attend as this is an invite only event.
Technology Trends 2017 – Accenture Tech Vision
PwC’s 20th CEO Survey
The Circular Design Guide
Corruption Perceptions Index 2016
Must watch and must reads
What Is a Successful Society? – umair haque
Why ‘1984’ Is a 2017 Must-Read
And why the book sold out on Amazon this week
2017: goodbye to replication, hello to originality. Efficiency is for robots.
Scott Galloway at DLD 2017
I trained myself to be less busy — and it dramatically improved my life
Davos videos on AI
Sergey Brin: The Future of AI and Google
Davos 2017 - Panel on Artificial Intelligence
IBM CEO Ginni Rometty on Artificial Intelligence
Future of Work
The Gradual Disappearance of Jobs
Are you sure you want to innovate like a startup?
How to Get People to Collaborate When You Don’t Control Their Salary
The Neuroscience of Strategic Leadership
The Great Unbundling by Ben Thompson
Doomsday Prep for the Super-Rich
An International Front Against Trump
IoT / Smart Cities
Bring on better energy consumption management
Artificial Intelligence
Competing in the Age of Artificial Intelligence
Ethically Aligned Design: A Vision for Prioritizing Human Wellbeing
How to build an inclusive future in the time of AI
How artificial intelligence can be corrupted to repress free speech
Whatever happened to the DeepMind AI ethics board Google promised?
An extensive list of European AI tech startups to watch in 2017 -
Your solar nebula by Olafur Eliasson
Your solar nebula by Olafur Eliasson
After the Big Now – Fabien Girardin
Your solar nebula by Olafur Eliasson
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