Chapter 17

Future Trends

Steven Wiley Emmett

If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts, he shall end in certainties.

Sir Francis Bacon,Advancement of Learning

In his introduction to Future Shock, the masterful study of our increasingly volatile world, Toffler (1971) draws upon the “deliciously ironic” words of what is purported to be an ancient Chinese proverb: “To prophesy is extremely difficult — especially with respect to the future” (p. 5). Indeed, accurate representation of the past is a formidable task; even more so is a reasonable depiction of some distant future. With this caveat offered, our concluding chapter will gaze forward in the belief that theoretical conjectures ...

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