2016-11-10 / Community

Glimpsing the future

By Alicia Doyle
Special to the Acorn

BEYOND AUTONOMOUS— Laura Robin, head of the BMW-owned Designworks studio, speaks about the future of automotive design at the Nov. 5 Conejo/ Las Virgenes Future Foundation 10x10 speaker event. 
JOHN LOESINGAcorn Newspapers BEYOND AUTONOMOUS— Laura Robin, head of the BMW-owned Designworks studio, speaks about the future of automotive design at the Nov. 5 Conejo/ Las Virgenes Future Foundation 10x10 speaker event. JOHN LOESINGAcorn Newspapers What will the region look like in the future? Will there be a new dawn in technology, transportation and social media?

The Conejo/Las Virgenes Future Foundation gave residents a glimpse into the world of tomorrow— both here and abroad—as the organization hosted its second annual 10x10 speaker event Nov. 5 at the Grant Brimhall Library in Thousand Oaks.

Ten experts in their fields each gave 10-minute talks on a variety of subjects. More than 130 people attended.

“How many of you have ever swum in a think tank?” Jeff Blum, 10x10 committee chair, asked the audience. “Well, in fact, today you are.”

The mission of the foundation is to stimulate discussion about what tomorrow may bring. The nonprofit organization was founded in 1972.

Paulette Lambert, director of nutrition at the California Health and Longevity Institute, spoke on rethinking nutrition.

She said the world’s population will grow to 9.9 billion by 2030 and food demand will be 50 percent higher.

“Forget about the wars over the oil in the Middle East. It will be over the water and over the food,” Lambert said.

Ron Schultz, founder of organizations dedicated to mindfulness based social innovation and entrepreneurship, spoke about becoming mindful in today’s world.

“We’re in a highly distracted world, and being present is not an easy thing to accomplish. Meditation is a way to stabilize your mind,” he said.

Kyle Jorrey, editor of the Thousand Oaks Acorn, talked about the increasing influence of social media. In 2015, the total world population was 7.3 billion people, Jorrey said, “and out of that 7.3 billion, 2.3 billion use social media, one-third of the entire world population.”

“So we’re going to need to work together as a population to find that right balance,” he said. “We never want to get to a place we’re not comfortable sitting and having a conversation . . . having a handshake, having a face-to-face. It can’t all happen electronically.”

Jon Myers, who develops and implements communications strategy for the American Red Cross’ Los Angeles region, spoke about disaster recovery.

In Los Angeles, 90 to 95 percent of people believe the next big quake is going to hit, he said.

“Studies have shown 6 to 20 percent of the people are actually prepared, so we know it’s coming and yet we’re not prepared for it.”

The topic of tomorrow’s parklands was presented by Belinda Faustinos, principal of BVF Consulting Inc., a company that provides strategic advice on the nexus of natural resources, communities and parks.

She said parks and open space are needed for communities to feel balanced in their lives.

“We have to figure out how we can preserve those remaining open spaces . . . and how we can ensure that our grandchildren are going to want to see them preserved as well,” Faustinos said.

Herb Gooch, professor of political science at Cal Lutheran University, talked about the future of medical marijuana.

“We’ve already had marijuana legalized but in medical form in California for 20 years,” Gooch said. “So the question now is to sort of get over the pros and cons and think we are licensing a huge new industry and what is its impact going to be on us.”

Laura Robin, studio head for Designworks in Los Angeles, addressed the future of mobility.

By 2030, more than 60 percent of the world’s population will live in cities, she said.

“So as designers, we have to think about what’s meaningful to people,” Robin said.

One thing is connectivity.

“There are consumers that are incredibly connected in their dayto day lives that get into their cars and they expect that same flow in their cars,” Robin said. “The premise is that when people are living in cities and have all this layered connectivity around them . . . that needs to happen in the car, too.”

Also speaking at the event were Mike Panesis, executive director of CLU’s Center for Entrepreneurship; Bill Watkins, an economic forecaster and professor at CLU; and Nathalie Gosset, chair of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Buenaventura section.

Gosset spoke about new technologies and how 3-D printing can be used not only to make prosthetic body parts but also for shoes, food and medicine.

Watkins discussed the future of the workforce.

He said Ventura County still has fewer jobs than at the beginning of the recession and the county “has created more college graduates than it’s created jobs for college graduates.

Panesis talked about the “shareconomy” in relation to companies like Uber, Lyft and Airbnb.

“What makes them special? No. 1, they’re helping you make better use of an underutilized asset,” he said. “Think how long your car sits in its driveway without being driven or how much of your house is unoccupied in any point in time. . . . So the shareconomy is about making that extra capacity available to others for a fee.”

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