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Publisher's Summary

"Bold, provocative...illuminates why we're having fewer babies, the middle class is stagnating, unemployment is shifting, and new powers are rising." (Adam Grant)

The world is changing drastically before our eyes - will you be prepared for what comes next? A groundbreaking analysis from one of the world's foremost experts on global trends, including analysis on how COVID-19 will amplify and accelerate each of these changes. 

Once upon a time, the world was neatly divided into prosperous and backward economies. Babies were plentiful, workers outnumbered retirees, and people aspiring towards the middle class yearned to own homes and cars. Companies didn't need to see any further than Europe and the United States to do well. Printed money was legal tender for all debts, public and private. We grew up learning how to "play the game", and we expected the rules to remain the same as we took our first job, started a family, saw our children grow up, and went into retirement with our finances secure. 

That world - and those rules - are over. 

By 2030, a new reality will take hold, and before you know it:

  • There will be more grandparents than grandchildren 
  • The middle class in Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa will outnumber the US and Europe combined 
  • The global economy will be driven by the non-Western consumer for the first time in modern history 
  • There will be more global wealth owned by women than men 
  • There will be more robots than workers 
  • There will be more computers than human brains 
  • There will be more currencies than countries 

All these trends, currently underway, will converge in the year 2030 and change everything you know about culture, the economy, and the world. 

According to Mauro F. Guillen, the only way to truly understand the global transformations underway - and their impacts - is to think laterally. That is, using "peripheral vision", or approaching problems creatively and from unorthodox points of view. Rather than focusing on a single trend - climate change or the rise of illiberal regimes, for example - Guillen encourages us to consider the dynamic inter-play between a range of forces that will converge on a single tipping point - 2030 - that will be, for better or worse, the point of no return. 

2030 is both a remarkable guide to the coming changes and an exercise in the power of "lateral thinking", thereby revolutionizing the way you think about cataclysmic change and its consequences.

A Macmillan Audio production from St. Martin's Press 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2020 Mauro F. Guillen (P)2020 Macmillan Audio

Critic Reviews

“For too long, the public’s understanding of social science has been dominated by economists and psychologists. We know a lot about what’s going on with dollars and senses, but we’re surprisingly uninformed about how social structures are transforming the world around us. Mauro Guillen, a brilliant sociologist, is here to change that. His bold, provocative book illuminates why we’re having fewer babies, the middle class is stagnating, unemployment is shifting, and new powers are rising.” (Adam Grant, New York Times best-selling author of Originals: How Non-Conformists Change the World, and host of the TED podcast WorkLife)

"We all 'feel' it - it registers itself in our excitement and anxiety of the massive disruption in technology, work, life and our world we are living through. These interconnected shifts in the way we live and work, our politics and culture, and on the earth add up to the most massive disruption and change in human history, Many smart people and many great books have grappled with discrete elements of these changes from automation and remote working, the rise and rebirth of cities, the new global middle class, and climate change. In 2030 AD, Mauro Guillen weaves all these threads and more together to provide a veritable guidebook for this brave new world we will leave to our children. Must reading for business and political leaders, city-builders and everyone concerned about what the future will bring." (Richard Florida, author of the international best seller, The Rise of the Creative Class: And How It's Transforming Work, Leisure, Community and Everyday Life)

“Who better than Mauro Guillen - with his world view, engaging writing and multi-disciplinary approach - to open our eyes to transformational global changes that stare us in the face, and that we are yet to internalize. Using many powerful examples from around the world to nudge us out of our comforting but over-simplified view of the world, Mauro illustrates brilliantly why our 'straightforward reality can no longer be taken for granted.' Supplementing this with a highly-accessible analysis of lateral thinking and peripheral vision, he helps us navigate what is 'an inherently confusing but also profoundly unsettling' outlook that too many of us are happy to ignore - either consciously or inadvertently so. Mauro’s book will be a must-read for those looking to understand the what, why and so what of transformational global change - that is, new trends that are emerging in a decisive, durable and impactful fashion; why they are doing so; and what this means not just for countries and companies, but also for households and communities.” (Mohamed El-Erian, Chief Economic Adviser, Allianz, and best-selling author of When Markets Collide)

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What listeners say about 2030

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Anti border wall and anti Trump

Dude can't infer it any more times how anti border wall, pro illegal immigrating and anti Trump he is. I couldn't listen to the drivel anymore.

3 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars

Robust and fairly optimistic look into the future

There are a lot of books on the market that attempt to talk about what the future will be like and what massive societal changes it will bring with it. “2030,” in many ways, is a lot like those other books.

Where it does switch things up, however, is with a cautiously optimistic view of the days and years ahead. That doesn’t mean it simply overlooks scary topics such as existential threats to humanity — instead, it lays them out pragmatically and suggests a “let’s figure it out attitude” to them. I really liked that aspect of this one.

There are definitely a few sections / chapters where the book goes on longer than I would’ve wanted it to. That makes me drop this rating down to four stars. But I still don’t think that takes away from the good writing and forecasting here. Especially because of its optimism, this one is certainly worth a read.

-Brian Sachetta
Author of “Get Out of Your Head”

2 people found this helpful

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Knowledge is Power

I loved learning about the Current Trends that will impact the future American Economy. I cannot wait to invest in healtchare, green technology as well as 3D printing. In 10 years I will become wealthy in more ways than one thanks to the knowledge acquired from this audiobook.

2 people found this helpful

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Lazy Analysis

I really didn't like the superficial analysis. The arguments were childish. I'd go for something deeper. Stay away from this one.

2 people found this helpful

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Unfocused and Clear Biases

the approach was not to take a idea and discover its merits throughout the writing of the book, but rather it is clear that an outcome was decided on before writing and the data was found to prove those points. not worth 11 hours of your time.

2 people found this helpful

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Good start, but then it blockchains

Every book about future has to mention blockchain and there it inevitably turns from insight into uneducated guessing and parroting of others. Sadly, this book, like so many before it has met this same fate, turning a 4 star early chapters into a 2 star book. Just read the first half and stop.

2 people found this helpful

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Thought Provoking but Sensationalist

I forced myself to finish this book although was tempted to stop listening, for the following reasons:
(1) it is a good collection of factoids and stories, clearly the author knows how to use the internet;
(2) it is short on analysis, and where analysis of the trends is provided, such analysis in not always clear - for example where is he going with the concept of the shared economy? Are we moving to the posessionless society (sort of Russia in 1918)? Unless all property is nationalized, somebody still will own apartments, cars, bikes, etc. So is that really sharing?
(3) it is very lopsided - the book might as well be called 2030 in Africa;
(4) it completely ignores Eastern Europe and the Middle East;
(5) it does not consider the factor of religion or the rise of conservativism and new nationalism;
(6) it is sensationalist to the point of searching for a problem to justify an explanation;
(7) any book that repeatedly invokes the spirits of Marx and Lenin is not credible;
(8) the narrator is very hard to listen to given his preachy and conspiratorial manner of speaking and the narration at the very end by the author himself was a significant improvement on delivery. Wish he had narrated the whole book himself.
In sum, it is OK, but could have been better.

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  • Dj
  • 05-07-21

Very insightful

This book painted a clear idea of the coming world landscape, that we'll all be trying to navigate. Fascinating read.

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Liberal BS

Supposed to be about the future, but the first half of the book is all about why the favored liberal policies are right and anyone that disagrees is an idiot. Couldn't finish it.

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Disappointing

The author selectively bends data to fit a narrative he wants to see, likely based on his personal policy preferences, as opposed to making an objective judgment on what may occur in 2030. The book read like a hectoring sermon of intellectual claptrap. M