The Future of Anywhere & World Citizenship
Updated: Feb 21
Trends of location, culture and technology are colliding, which makes this an exciting time to be alive. I was born into the internet as the internet was being born. And now, the internet is going to have a secondary affect on our civilization. I’m not sure if it will democratize or stir up political unrest, but what I do know is this: location is becoming less and less important.
Even though very few Americans currently hold passports (let alone use them) , we are moving closer and closer toward becoming a locationless society.
Our new definition of location will be attached to the moment, rather than physical proximity. Location will change as dynamically as where we work, how we work and where we live and why. Listening to the whispers of early thought leaders and adopters I sense that as mainstream jobs become less restrained with distributed workforces, location will come into consciousness as a choice. For some, like myself, location is already a choice.
Currently, most are bound by jobs, mortgages and familial obligation. These factors are not going to change overnight. But, we’ve got a new generation of youngsters that don’t subscribe to the old world.
The millennials are placing less importance on marriage, traveling more, and choosing jobs that provide more freedom. I find that this generation wants to find a new way to live for purpose, on purpose rather than slaving up the corporate ladder. Many of them have found it difficult to get meaningful work after college, pushing them to be creative, innovative and more entrepreneurial earlier in life.
Now along come the 76 million members of Generation Y. For these new 20-something workers, the line between work and home doesn’t really exist. They just want to spend their time in meaningful and useful ways, no matter where they are. Time Magazine One study found that 85% of Generation Y wanted to spend 30% to 70% of their time working from home. More than half wanted a flexible working arrangement. The Guardian
Add to this the bubble of corporations offering remote positions, coworking from anywhere, easier utilization of space and cultural/economic acceptance of resource sharing and you’ve got a recipe for locationless living. Who needs a car anymore? Use Zipcar or other next generation car sharing services. Who needs localized hardware when most everything you need is in the cloud? Why spend all your hard earned money on living when you can be saving and living on the beaches of Costa Rica in your own beach chalet?
This is just the beginning. What I’m describing is the generational movement moving one step closer toward necessitating world citizenship and eventually a world government. I’m not saying you’ll have rights everywhere immediately once this evolution, this revolution takes place. And I don’t think that’s realistic in our lifetime. However, there are a shit ton of implications here.
For example, say that in ten years time, 20% of Americans decide to live internationally, while paying taxes (or not) and claiming residency in the U.S. There will be nothing to stop these people from bouncing around Europe, Mexico or South America, loopholing through visa requirements. And what will that do to the local economy in the U.S.? Will international governments become increasingly competitive, offering attractive incentives? What are the other implications?
The internet connects us, all of us. You can now find a connection anywhere. Heck, you can even harness your own hotspot with MiFi.
We’re on the brink of stage II. The real stage II, not some web 2.0 heresy.
What do you think?