World Future Conference: Reporting from Tomorrow

Sunday kicked off the World Future Conference, an annual gathering of future thinkers from around the world. I’ll report in based on my experiences (only a tiny slice of the whole conference) over the next few days.

We were welcomed to the conference by a pair of keynote speakers, Helen Fisher (professor at Rutgers University and author) and Gregory Stock (president of Signum Biosciences and author) .

I am excitedly anticipating the meat of the conference after these keynotes. While Fisher focused on her area of expertise, love and attachment, and Stock on his, the cutting edge of biotechnology, one theme ran constant. I think Stock himself summed it up nicely: “we are here to change our vision of who we are as human beings.” Both spoke about their areas of development as they related to us as people. What it means to prescribe Zoloft, which lowers sex drive, and thus reduces the body’s ability to produce dopamine? Does that mean people love less? Or what will happen when there is a pill created that will control aging (Stock thinks that the first person to live to be 150 is alive today)? These are big questions that could affect any of us, or all of us. I didn’t have an extensive knowledge of the World Future Society before deciding to attend the conference, so I’ll admit that a little part of me was afraid of three days of hyperfuture geeks speak that I wouldn’t be able to make actionable for our clients or Fallon, but after the kickoff, I’m no longer concerned.