Are you ready for the Rise of the Megacity?

(Written by Fiona Buckley)

Imagine your workplace and life in 2040. Fast forward 24 years and take a moment to visualise what your workplace will look like, where it could be, where you might live and how happy will you be with your environment.

These are just some of the questions posed at the recent One Big Day event hosted by Corenet. We talked robots, megacities, mindfulness and wellbeing at work, trends and disruptors on talent. At one point we even hugged the stranger next to us.

IMG_0017 copyIt actually might take more than a moment to try and comprehend how different it will be. If we thought the pace of change was pretty snappy throughout the last decade of technological change, then you’d better brace yourself.

The workplace is about to undergo a revolution like we’ve never seen before as we experience the rise of the megacity – which for the record is defined as 10M+. Think big, think Hong Kong. Think of that as your potential ‘new normal’.

As conferences go, this was one of the better ones in recent years that I’ve attended. The speakers were top notch and we heard from Wired, Siemens and The London School of Economics, JLL and Major General Nick Welch, Assistant Chief of the General Staff (what that guy doesn’t know about collaboration isn’t worth knowing).

So what did I learn? Collaboration and partnerships between companies and industries will significantly increase and services will ‘blend’. With the onslaught of big data and how that is ‘mined’ we will have a new range of services provided to the megacity dweller that are personalised transcending work and home life. It is estimated that approximately 60 per cent of jobs that humans do today will be automated. Entire new industries will be created and the way we frontload our children’s education needs to be reformed. We will be working longer throughout our lifetimes and learning shouldn’t stop and start right at the beginning.

This of course brings challenges; space, privacy, education and health to name but a few. I’m not sure if we have a choice to stop the pace of city growth as mass urbanisation continues. But we do have a choice in how we adapt to it if we want to be part of the megacity life.

So if you are a business owner or involved in the strategy of growth for your company or are just plain interested start thinking about what your business and services could look like. And finally, if the world goes megacity crazy, let’s find a way to protect and ring fence the green spaces.

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Magenta Associates