We fear the future and don’t like change. It’s human nature, an anthropologic version of the scorpion and the frog. Witness people’s reactions to cell phones 15 years ago, which are now ubiquitous, or Facebook and the delightful narcissism it brings. Heck, indoor plumbing was initially rejected. Who, after all, would want to do “that” in their house?
It’s the ability to overcome that innate fear that makes visionaries who they are; that rare and courageous breed. As Ayn Rand said, “Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps, down new roads, armed with nothing but their own vision.”
The planning profession has only just struck out, taking the first tentative steps down the roads of which Rand speaks. After all, it was only a generation ago that a pension was the only planning anyone had to worry about. If ever there was a profession to embrace the future, this is it.
Which is the reason for our annual “Future” issue, a look ahead at the technology, regulation, succession and everything else just over the horizon, as well as the opportunity (and, yes, danger) they bring.