The Future

Six Drivers of Global Change

Author: Al Gore

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 067964430X

Category: Political Science

Page: 592

View: 5248

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER From the former vice president and #1 New York Times bestselling author comes An Inconvenient Truth for everything—a frank and clear-eyed assessment of six critical drivers of global change in the decades to come. Ours is a time of revolutionary change that has no precedent in history. With the same passion he brought to the challenge of climate change, and with his decades of experience on the front lines of global policy, Al Gore surveys our planet’s beclouded horizon and offers a sober, learned, and ultimately hopeful forecast in the visionary tradition of Alvin Toffler’s Future Shock and John Naisbitt’s Megatrends. In The Future, Gore identifies the emerging forces that are reshaping our world: • Ever-increasing economic globalization has led to the emergence of what he labels “Earth Inc.”—an integrated holistic entity with a new and different relationship to capital, labor, consumer markets, and national governments than in the past. • The worldwide digital communications, Internet, and computer revolutions have led to the emergence of “the Global Mind,” which links the thoughts and feelings of billions of people and connects intelligent machines, robots, ubiquitous sensors, and databases. • The balance of global political, economic, and military power is shifting more profoundly than at any time in the last five hundred years—from a U.S.-centered system to one with multiple emerging centers of power, from nation-states to private actors, and from political systems to markets. • A deeply flawed economic compass is leading us to unsustainable growth in consumption, pollution flows, and depletion of the planet’s strategic resources of topsoil, freshwater, and living species. • Genomic, biotechnology, neuroscience, and life sciences revolutions are radically transforming the fields of medicine, agriculture, and molecular science—and are putting control of evolution in human hands. • There has been a radical disruption of the relationship between human beings and the earth’s ecosystems, along with the beginning of a revolutionary transformation of energy systems, agriculture, transportation, and construction worldwide. From his earliest days in public life, Al Gore has been warning us of the promise and peril of emergent truths—no matter how “inconvenient” they may seem to be. As absorbing as it is visionary, The Future is a map of the world to come, from a man who has looked ahead before and been proven all too right. Praise for The Future “Magisterial . . . The passion is unmistakable. So is the knowledge. Practically every page offers an illumination.”—Bloomberg “In The Future . . . Gore takes on a subject whose scale matches that of his achievements and ambition.”—The New York Times Book Review “Historically grounded . . . Gore’s strengths lie in his passion for the subject and in his ability to take the long view by putting current events and trends in historical context.”—Publishers Weekly “Provocative, smart, densely argued . . . a tour de force of Big Picture thinking.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review) “A luminously intelligent analysis that is packed with arresting ideas and facts.”—The Guardian
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The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies

Author: Erik Brynjolfsson,Andrew McAfee

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 0393241254

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 304

View: 9310

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A New York Times Bestseller. A “fascinating” (Thomas L. Friedman, New York Times) look at how digital technology is transforming our work and our lives. In recent years, Google’s autonomous cars have logged thousands of miles on American highways and IBM’s Watson trounced the best human Jeopardy! players. Digital technologies—with hardware, software, and networks at their core—will in the near future diagnose diseases more accurately than doctors can, apply enormous data sets to transform retailing, and accomplish many tasks once considered uniquely human. In The Second Machine Age MIT’s Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee—two thinkers at the forefront of their field—reveal the forces driving the reinvention of our lives and our economy. As the full impact of digital technologies is felt, we will realize immense bounty in the form of dazzling personal technology, advanced infrastructure, and near-boundless access to the cultural items that enrich our lives. Amid this bounty will also be wrenching change. Professions of all kinds—from lawyers to truck drivers—will be forever upended. Companies will be forced to transform or die. Recent economic indicators reflect this shift: fewer people are working, and wages are falling even as productivity and profits soar. Drawing on years of research and up-to-the-minute trends, Brynjolfsson and McAfee identify the best strategies for survival and offer a new path to prosperity. These include revamping education so that it prepares people for the next economy instead of the last one, designing new collaborations that pair brute processing power with human ingenuity, and embracing policies that make sense in a radically transformed landscape. A fundamentally optimistic book, The Second Machine Age alters how we think about issues of technological, societal, and economic progress.
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Economic Growth and Sustainability

Systems Thinking for a Complex World

Author: Karen L. Higgins

Publisher: Academic Press

ISBN: 0128031085

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 228

View: 7023

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How to sustain our world for future generations has perplexed us for centuries. We have reached a crossroads: we may choose the rocky path of responsibility or continue on the paved road of excess that promises hardship for our progeny. Independent efforts to resolve isolated issues are inadequate. Different from these efforts and from other books on the topic, this book uses systems thinking to understand the dominant forces that are shaping our hope for sustainability. It first describes a mental model - the bubble that holds our beliefs - that emerges from preponderant world views and explains current global trends. The model emphasizes economic growth and drives behavior toward short-term and self-motivated outcomes that thwart sustainability. The book then weaves statistical trends into a system diagram and shows how the economic, environmental, and societal contributors of sustainability interact. From this holistic perspective, it finds leverage points where actions can be most effective and combines eight areas of intervention into an integrated plan. By emphasizing both individual and collective actions, it addresses the conundrum of how to blend human nature with sustainability. Finally, it identifies primary three lessons we can learn by applying systems thinking to sustainability. Its metaphor-rich and accessible style makes the complex topic approachable and allows the reader to appreciate the intricate balance required to sustain life on Earth. Highlights the application of system thinking in economics Identifies systemic leveraging actions for achieving sustainability Outlines a comprehensive and integrated plan for achieving sustainable stewardship in the future
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Rule of Law for Nature

New Dimensions and Ideas in Environmental Law

Author: Christina Voigt

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1107513219

Category: Law

Page: N.A

View: 6579

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'Human laws must be reformulated to keep human activities in harmony with the unchanging and universal laws of nature.' This 1987 statement by the World Commission on Environment and Development has never been more relevant and urgent than it is today. Despite the many legal responses to various environmental problems, more greenhouse gases than ever before are being released into the atmosphere, biological diversity is rapidly declining and fish stocks in the oceans are dwindling. This book challenges the doctrinal construction of environmental law and presents an innovative legal approach to ecological sustainability: a rule of law for nature which guides and transcends ordinary written laws and extends fundamental principles of respect, integrity and legal security to the non-human world.
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Network Society and Future Scenarios for a Collaborative Economy

Author: V. Kostakis,M. Bauwens

Publisher: Springer

ISBN: 1137406895

Category: Political Science

Page: 97

View: 4332

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This book builds on the idea that peer-to-peer infrastructures are gradually becoming the general conditions of work, economy, and society. Using a four-scenario approach, the authors seek to simplify possible outcomes and to explore relevant trajectories of the current techno-economic paradigm within and beyond capitalism.
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Betting the Farm on a Drought

Stories from the Front Lines of Climate Change

Author: Seamus McGraw

Publisher: University of Texas Press

ISBN: 1477303839

Category: Science

Page: 190

View: 8684

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Climate change has become one of the most polarizing issues of our time. Extremists on the left regularly issue hyperbolic jeremiads about the impending destruction of the environment, while extremists on the right counter with crass, tortured denials. But out in the vast middle are ordinary people dealing with stronger storms and more intense droughts than they’ve ever known. This middle ground is the focus of Betting the Farm on a Drought, a lively, thought-provoking book that lays out the whole story of climate change—the science, the math, and most importantly, the human stories of people fighting both the climate and their own deeply held beliefs to find creative solutions to a host of environmental challenges. Seamus McGraw takes us on a trip along America’s culturally fractured back roads and listens to farmers and ranchers and fishermen, many of them people who are not ideologically, politically, or in some cases even religiously inclined to believe in man-made global climate change. He shows us how they are already being affected and the risks they are already taking on a personal level to deal with extreme weather and its very real consequences for their livelihoods. McGraw also speaks to scientists and policymakers who are trying to harness that most renewable of American resources, a sense of hope and self-reliance that remains strong in the face of daunting challenges. By bringing these voices together, Betting the Farm on a Drought ultimately becomes a model for how we all might have a pragmatic, reasoned conversation about our changing climate.
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International Climate Change Law

Author: Daniel Bodansky,Jutta Brunnée,Lavanya Rajamani

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0191643149

Category: Law

Page: N.A

View: 6139

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This textbook, by three experts in the field, provides a comprehensive overview of international climate change law. Climate change is one of the fundamental challenges facing the world today, and is the cause of significant international concern. In response, states have created an international climate regime. The treaties that comprise the regime - the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the 1997 Kyoto Protocol and the 2015 Paris Agreement establish a system of governance to address climate change and its impacts. This book provides a clear analytical guide to the climate regime, as well as other relevant international legal rules. The book begins by locating international climate change law within the broader context of international law and international environmental law. It considers the evolution of the international climate change regime, and the process of law-making that has led to it. It examines the key provisions of the Framework Convention, the Kyoto Protocol and the Paris Agreement. It analyses the principles and obligations that underpin the climate regime, as well as the elaborate institutional and governance architecture that has been created at successive international conferences to develop commitments and promote transparency and compliance. The final two chapters address the polycentric nature of international climate change law, as well as the intersections of international climate change law with other areas of international regulation. This book is an essential introduction to international climate change law for students, scholars and negotiators.
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Sustainability

A History

Author: Jeremy L. Caradonna

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 019937242X

Category: Science

Page: 208

View: 9087

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The word is nearly ubiquitous: at the grocery store we shop for "sustainable foods" that were produced from "sustainable agriculture"; groups ranging from small advocacy organizations to city and state governments to the United Nations tout "sustainable development" as a strategy for local and global stability; and woe betide the city-dweller who doesn't aim for a "sustainable lifestyle." Seeming to have come out of nowhere to dominate the discussion-from permaculture to renewable energy to the local food movement-the ideas that underlie and define sustainability can be traced back several centuries. In this illuminating and fascinating primer, Jeremy L. Caradonna does just that, approaching sustainability from a historical perspective and revealing the conditions that gave it shape. Locating the underpinnings of the movement as far back as the 1660s, Caradonna considers the origins of sustainability across many fields throughout Europe and North America. Taking us from the emergence of thoughts guiding sustainable yield forestry in the late 17th and 18th centuries, through the challenges of the Industrial Revolution, the birth of the environmental movement, and the emergence of a concrete effort to promote a balanced approach to development in the latter half of the 20th century, he shows that while sustainability draws upon ideas of social justice, ecological economics, and environmental conservation, it is more than the sum of its parts and blends these ideas together into a dynamic philosophy. Caradonna's book broadens our understanding of what "sustainability" means, revealing how it progressed from a relatively marginal concept to an ideal that shapes everything from individual lifestyles, government and corporate strategies, and even national and international policy. For anyone seeking understand the history of those striving to make the world a better place to live, here's a place to start.
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Digital Mosaic

Media, Power, and Identity in Canada

Author: David Taras

Publisher: University of Toronto Press

ISBN: 1442608897

Category: Social Science

Page: 352

View: 5441

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Digital Media has transformed the way Canadians socialize and interact, conduct business, experience culture, fight political battles, and acquire knowledge. Traditional media, including newspapers and conventional TV networks, remain the primary link to Canada's political sphere but are under concerted attack. YouTube, blogs, online broadcasting, Facebook, and Twitter have opened new and exciting avenues of expression but offer little of the same "nation-building glue" as traditional media. Consequently, Canada is experiencing a number of overlapping crises simultaneously: a crisis in news and journalism, threats to the survival of the media system as a whole, and a decline in citizen engagement. In Digital Mosaic, David Taras both embraces and challenges new media by arguing that these coinciding crises bring exciting opportunities as well as considerable dangers to democratic life and citizen engagement in Canada.
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