The Brave New World of Work

There was a time when our futures were predictable. When the economy was stable and employment rates were relatively good, we enjoyed some degree of expectation that this would continue. The past dictated the future and it was the same view of the future our parents, teachers, and business leaders continued to nurture. “Get a…

Arepas, Fufu, and Gado Gado

Immigration and Canada’s Changing Culinary Landscape Last spring, as I was strolling through my local farmer’s market in Kitchener, Ontario, I had a sudden craving for pupusas, Salvadoran grilled corn cakes stuffed with beans and cheese. Glancing around at the food stalls while waiting for my fix, I saw another item on the menu that…

The Future of Truth in Business

“Truths are illusions of which one has forgotten that they are illusions.”  — Friedrich Nietzsche, from “On Truth and Lying in a Non-Moral Sense” “Never tell a lie when you can bullshit your way through.”  — Eric Ambler, from “The Dirty Story”   Ever since the US Presidential election, it has become fashionable to lament that we…

Crowdfunding Futures Thinking

Idea Couture has just launched IMPACT: A Foresight Game on Kickstarter. Much of the strategic foresight work we do at Idea Couture is about helping decision-­makers navigate uncertainty and capitalize on change. “Decision-­makers” in this case usually refers to C-level executives at Fortune 500 companies. For our clients, we function as a kind of strategic radar, identifying the threats and opportunities that aren’t in plain sight. We look beyond the purview of your typical corporate strategic planning cycle, instead speculating on possibilities that sit 7, 10, and 15 years out, or further. Strategic foresight is a process, and…

How Female Consumership is Changing the Future of Cannabis

With increasing access to medical and recreational cannabis across the United States, the face of cannabis users is undergoing a rapid transformation. The notion of the traditional stoner is shrinking; Sean Penn's Jeff Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High or Brad Pitt's couch-bound character in True Romance are now only a microcosm of the…

Alisha Bhagat on the Future of Childcare

Alisha Bhagat, futurist at Forum for the Future, wants to shift the perspective around working women. Right now, she explains, the word “sacrifice” is all too often associated with women who have to trade in their careers to take care of their families. By 2040, Bhagat envisions working women distancing themselves from this so-called “sacrifice,” and…

Nora Khaldi on the Future of Biotechnology

Nora Khaldi, Founder of Nuritas, is revolutionizing the food industry through the use of biotechnology. After discovering an undeniable gap between the food and pharma industries, Nora sought to bridge it by starting a biotech company of her own.   Nuritas works to discover and produce all-natural ingredients that have scientifically proven health benefits. Through…

Julia Hemphill on the Future of Labor Relations

Julia Hemphill imagines a future where gender location no longer limits the industries that women enter, and their advancement in male-dominated fields is not capped because of perceived differences. According to Julia, in coming years the term “gender” will encompass new meanings that will redefine women’s role in the workplace. With the help of advocacy and research, women will…

Your Breasts Are No Good Here

The Bible and Western Civilization. “Okay, that’ll do.” It was the summer of the last year of university and I needed one more course to graduate. I had taken, what I like to refer to as, a personal sabbatical halfway through my bachelor’s degree. I came back to school focused, passionate, and ready to work hard, but…

Shazi Visram on the Future of Food

It’s no surprise that Shazi Visram, founder of Happy Family brands, foresees a bright and healthy future for consumers. Happy Family is a leading baby food company devoted to providing families with nutritious and organic alternatives. While today’s food industry revolves around convenience, Shazi is hopeful that there will be shift toward focusing on health…

Katharine Zaleski and Milena Berry on the Future of Employment

Both Katharine Zaleski and Milena Berry envision the future of employment to be more inclusive for women. They see virtual reality and other technologies playing a significant role in transforming the workforce, facilitating a more flexible environment in which women and other minorities can be more active. Katharine and Milena founded PowerToFly to help women…

No Normal Future

We have simply got to give up on trying to “predict” The Future. No matter how many billions of dollars DARPA and its subsidiaries are able to acquire to try to do so; no matter how huge big data gets; no matter how many books are written about Superforecasting or the foresightfulness of crowds; the time…

Jess Weiner on the Future of Influence

As a young girl, Jess Weiner never felt as though she was represented in the advertising and media surrounding her. That’s why she started Talk to Jess, a consultancy that educates corporations on how to shape their conversations around women. As a self esteem expert, writer, and educator, she’s hopeful about the power individuals have…