Marcus Barber invited to attend World Water Week in Stockholm 2007

Futurist Marcus Barber has been invited to present at the Stockholm International Water Institute’s prestigious World Water Week conference to be held in Stockholm later this year. His abstract submission ‘Life versus Lifestyle: the emerging clash between consumer demands and water availability’ forms part of the key workshop item of ‘Managing Future Consumer Demands’ which will attempt to consider the multitude of approaches and factors that will influence fresh water availability around the globe. The full abstract is availble below. To request a copy of the full paper, please contact us

Title of Paper:

‘Life versus Lifestyle: the emerging clash between consumer demands and water availability’

Key Words:  Consumers; Commercial Impacts; Globals; Lifestyles; Values

Abstract

For arguably the first time in the history of humankind, the developed world is facing similar water access problems to those of their less developed counterparts. 

The author asserts that as water is relied upon in every stage of production, all trade exchanges are simply examples of shifting water in its various end states. This understanding creates a paradigmatic shift in thinking for consumers of tomorrow who will increasingly rely upon ‘water used in production’ as an influencing factor when considering which products to buy.

In this piece we use two new concepts to change our paradigm on water access and use: the Global Currency Map”(GCM)  that assesses the types of challenges faced around the world and the different societal approaches to dealing with the crisis of water access; and a universal currency unit called Globals – the equivalent of 1 litre of fresh water.  

By using Globals as a currency unit, consumers are made aware of the true costs associated with creating products and services and will begin to make more critical choices about the types of products they buy and influence their understanding about appropriate uses of water.  This awareness will lead to a massive increase in pressure on companies whose high water use is deemed unacceptable give the consumers’ values. The author envisages a consumer based water usage guide that will enable the same product type from different manufacturers to be compared for water consumption.

The GCM also shines a spotlight on the topographical, geographical and societal biases that influence the amount and quality of available water.  In this light we understand that countries that have an abundance of Globals to ‘spend’ tend to be more materialistic while those that have few typically face survival issues.  The emerging consumer issue around the world can now be summed up as a choice between “Life versus Lifestyle”.

Before I Was Me – thoughts on what aging might hold

Mar 12, 2021

Sometimes the words come to you readily and this small piece has me thinking about what I’d like to say at a time when maybe I’ve lost the cognitive ability to do so   Before I was Me Before I was Me I used to be fit, and even quite smart; We’d chat about love,…

Read More >

Waving Goodbye to Wedgewood’s Factory in HR

Mar 6, 2021

I was doing it well before then and there’s clips of me online going back as far as 2010 or so, railing against the idea of human resources as a label and the insistence by HR managers or CEOs that only people who work ‘in the office’ are going to be productive. It Is A…

Read More >

Why the Future of Vertical Farming is Two Decades Ahead of Expectations

Feb 2, 2021

Like lab grown meats, Vertical Farming is going to be part of the future of food. For now it might be best to compare them to small scale battery storage on the electrical grid that can help balance out spikes of demand in the system and provide an output directly where needed.   Eventually (like…

Read More >

A Shift in Perspectives – What Commercial Property Owners Are About to Experience that Many have Never Before

Jan 27, 2021

In rental and lease markets it’s fair to say that for the best part of three decades, the landlords have been the price setters. The rules around negative gearing in domestic supply enable sizeable portfolios. Demand in office spaces in central suburbs has been consistently tight. And now, finally, CFO’s have become aware of the…

Read More >

PPE Opportunities for Australian Manufacturers Emerging in the USA

Nov 28, 2020

With Australia having just about wrestled Covid19 to the ground (NSW remains a bit of an issue) there’s now surging demand for PPE in the USA. The Covid19 virus is tracking toward an exponential increase and PPE Manufacturers should start looking for supply opportunities Sadly in the USA over the past week, they are adding…

Read More >

The Mechanical, Psychological, and Biological Interventions of a Pandemic

Oct 19, 2020

The Mechanical, Psychological, and Biological Interventions of a Pandemic With Johnson and Johnson also pausing it’s #Covid19 #vaccine trial, it is becoming clearer to more of the public, that the long steady path to a vaccine is not something that can be rushed for anyone’s political agenda or preferred view of the world. We’re learning…

Read More >

Life Versus Lifestyle – Approaching Life AfterLockdown

Oct 12, 2020

It seems that one way or another, Victoria is going to pop out of #Lockdown. Probably not in the way we would have hoped. And so for everyone pushing for #AfterLockdown in Victoria and for the wider society, there are two questions you must confront: One – ‘What do you feel is an acceptable level…

Read More >

The art of sanity in a Pandemic Lockdown

Aug 29, 2020

No, it’s not easy. Most of the challenges come down to our expectations – are they valid based on the assumptions you have made about your future? Those assumptions are based on the information you have available to you. We gather information, make an assessment of meaning, which leads us to make assumptions for an…

Read More >

Covid19 – Helping People Deal With Lock-down Events

Jul 3, 2020

A thought on the ‘Why should I be in lock-down in my suburb, it’s not fair that we have to do it and no one else has to, my hair’s a mess I need to sell coffees and pizza’ crowd – an explanation you might appreciate   You’ve been asked to go back into lock-down…

Read More >

What Makes Good Visions?

May 4, 2020

Visions are forward looking statement, but good ones, REALLY good ones have key elements 1. They are things you want but do NOT have 2. Are as long or as short as they need to be 3. Are by the people they are for 4. Are for the people they are by 5.Offer stability in…

Read More >