Facing the Future is a brand new 4 hour video presentation that combines the future-mapping work of Nicole Foss and Laurence Boomert, extending the material presented in their recent lecture tour of the US and Canada. It spans the full range from big picture vision to detailed prescription for positive action in light of their view of what’s ahead.
First, Nicole and Laurence focus on the scope of the challenges facing local government – the debt crisis, a history of disempowerment through political centralization, the downloading of unfunded responsibilities and the myriad governance issues that arise as a result.
They advice municipalities in navigating a future very different from that envisaged in their ubiquitous 30 year growth plans. Priorities must be redefined, as must the means for implementing difficult political decisions with far-reaching socioeconomic impacts. The task is nothing less than the reinvention of civic leadership for our times.
Second, Nicole looks at money and the global financial situation today, covering a variety of systemically important US states and different corners of the globe. The nature of a deflationary liquidity crunch, and how it creates a state of artificial scarcity, is explored in depth. She focuses on the need to shift investment from the global ponzi scheme toward building the real world change necessary to transition to a more locally based economy, employing alternative forms of liquidity as a positive political tool.
Finally, Laurence offers a detailed exploration of community initiatives capable of building the trust and social cohesion necessary to navigate the challenging times ahead. From specific projects to general community hubs to maker-spaces to cooperative businesses, these initiatives facilitate the development of collective sense and constructive action, with alternative currencies and trading arrangements able to offset, locally, the impact of a liquidity crunch in the larger system. These are the adaptive actions we must take if we are to successfully navigate the consequences of reaching our limits.