Blockchain technology can enable sustainability: Report

Changing livelihoods in emerging economies and regenerative farming are among global trends shaping the future, says report from NGO Forum for the Future

GN Bureau | February 6, 2018


#Farming   #Livelihood   #Blockchain   #Sustainability  

Forum for the Future, one of the world’s leading sustainability non-profits, has called on leaders to better understand the dynamic trends that are shaping the future, in order to create strategies that effectively navigate today’s complex times and unlock new opportunities for sustainability.

Titled Future of Sustainability 2018 – Living in nonlinear times, the crowd-sourced report sheds light on seven “areas of dynamism” that are exerting a profound impact on societies today, from the emergence of blockchain technology, to changing livelihoods in low income and developing economies, and regenerative approaches to agriculture.

Drawing on the key technological, political, economic and environmental shifts happening in these areas, the report highlights the implications, as well as the rich opportunities on offer for business, civil society and government leaders to radically and rapidly reshape current systems of behaviour and practice, for long-lasting, systemic change.

Anna Warrington, Director of Forum for the Future in India, said: “We live in a world of great political, economic and environmental uncertainty, in which sudden and major changes have become the new normal. India sits at the heart of some of these shifts, with factors such as its ban on fossil fuel cars, pioneering action against plastic pollution and job disruption from automation creating fertile ground for system-level shifts. We need a better understanding of the trends emerging today that will impact India’s future, how they are linked, and also how we are part of ongoing processes of change. Only then can leaders make better decisions that ensure that we survive and thrive in the future.”

For each of the seven areas, the report describes “signals of change” – real-life examples of disruption and/or innovation around the world - and considers their implications for the future. These signals act as tangible proof points of change in motion, and demonstrate how leaders and decision makers need to think more systemically in order to understand where different sectors are headed and the opportunities they can harness to help deliver a more sustainable future.

The report considers the reality behind blockchain, assessing how the decentralised database may be able to support sustainable practices beyond the world of cryptocurrency, and exploring ways it might be combined with other technologies to deliver greater impact in the future. For example, Akshaya Patra, an Indian NGO that runs the world’s largest school lunch programme, has teamed up with Accenture to improve its service through blockchain, creating efficiency gains that enable the NGO to provide one million more meals per year.

People are starting to make new livelihoods in low-income and emerging economies, through shifts in demographics, technologies and business models. As automation spreads to industries such as ICT services, manufacturing and agriculture, these countries face significant job disruption - India’s projections for formal job loss stand at 69% in a recent study - creating a clear need for new development routes and sustainable livelihoods. One solution is the spread of gig platforms such as Uber, which help to semi-formalise the informal market to make it more accessible. UBI is also being investigated in many emerging economies, with pilots in India so far indicating positive benefits such as increased food security and welfare, and higher levels of emancipation and economic activity.

In agriculture, conventional models are putting increasing pressure on natural systems with significant implications for feeding growing populations and for keeping climate change in check. In response, we are seeing signs of regenerative agriculture - innovative, restorative approaches that give back more to the environment than is being taken out. New systems of automation and data collection can support these approaches, with positive results in decreasing soil disturbance, enhancing monitoring and enabling higher yields with lower input. These new developments present huge opportunities for producers, businesses and governments alike to develop a food and farming system that is productive and sustainable in the long term, said a press release.
 

Comments

 

Other News

When Jaitley asked me to guess his age...

Sometime in 1999, I took Arun Jaitley out for meal for the column, “Lunch with Business Standard”. As is his wont, he chose his own place for lunch. It was at the Chambers at the Taj Mansingh hotel, an exclusive domain of the high and the mighty Delhi. As we sat down for the meal

Thus ends the Chidamba-Run!

The arrest of Palaniappan Chidambaram, former union minister of home & finance, by the CBI, albeit after his much dramatic disappearance and reappearance, has brought an end to his long run from the arms of law. As a finance minister, being at the other end of the law, the former ministe

What Imran’s rant against RSS tells us about Modi’s Kashmir policy

An unintended consequence of the inversion of Article 370 and the division of the state of Jammu and Kashmir into two union territories is the curious revival of Pakistan’s interest in Indian history and sociology. For the first time in decades, a Pakistan prime minister made the Rasht

On a Personal note with actor Neeraj Kabi

Neeraj Kabi, a critically acclaimed self-taught actor, theatre director, and acting teacher, has worked in Odiya, Hindi and international cinema, theatre, television and web series. In 2014 he was honoured with the best actor award at the 4th Sakhalin International Film Festival for his role in the fil

Talking to Trump, Modi hits out at Imran’s anti-India rhetoric

Prime minister Narendra Modi has told US president Donald Trump that Pakistan prime minister Imran Khan’s “incitement to anti-India violence” was not good for peace in south Asia. Modi and Trump had a telephonic conversation – their first since the Aug 5 move to chang

Paediatricians call for junking unhealthy food

As children are consuming more and more fast foods and sweetened beverages are becoming, leading to obesity and related non-communicable diseases (NCDs), the Indian Academy of Pediatrics (IAP) has come out with guidelines on such substances. The dietary guidelines under its nutrition chapter



Current Issue

Current Issue

Video

CM Nitish’s convoy attacked in Buxar

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter