April 13, 2012

Weekly Roundup: World Happiness Report, tech guilt and the undereducated male

Posted by: in North America

-An International Monetary Fund report examines the unexpected costs that aging populations will incur and says governments and pension funds aren’t prepared, Reuters reports.

-Smile! Columbia University’s Earth Institute releases its first World Happiness Report, finding that the keys to happiness are marriage, wealth and employment (sort of). Check out Fast Company’s synopsis.

-Myanmar’s leading business families are attempting to “cultivate a new image” as the country opens up after decades of military rule, according to a Reuters special report.

-The Economist looks at the growing market for private health care in China.

-Hospitals around the U.S. are opening geriatric emergency units, reports The New York Times, another way in which businesses are Retooling for an Aging World, one of our 10 Trends for 2010.

-Ireland has lost a third of its restaurants to the country’s economic crisis, reports The Wall Street Journal.

-The New Yorker asks, “Why are so many Americans living by themselves?” in a review of Eric Klinenberg’s book Going Solo.

-“Men are becoming the undereducated gender,” says Bloomberg Businessweek, spotlighting U.S. data projections showing the education gap widening.

-A U.K. study of marriage patterns finds women no longer tend to “marry up,” a trend that’s affecting social mobility and inequality, according to The Guardian.

-Facebook’s billion-dollar acquisition of Instagram is a turning point in the tech world’s shift from computers to mobile, says The New York Times.

-MIT Technology Review makes the case that ultra-low-power computing “will change everything.”

-Credit Suisse estimates that global smartphone sales will pass 1 billion units in 2014.

-A Gallup exec tells Marketplace that a lot of younger Americans feel guilty about how much time they spend with their phones and believe they’re online too much.

-A small study by Time Inc. finds that young consumers switch between media constantly, meaning brands must work ever harder to grab their attention.

-The New York Times reports that customer confusion over keeping tabs on mobile data usage is an issue that’s likely to grow with adoption of faster devices and networks.

-Ad Age reports that with various trends changing the nature of menial jobs, too many brands are represented by undertrained “frontline” workers.

-The Wall Street Journal takes a look at how major retailers are battling the “showrooming” trend (which we discussed last week).

-The New York Times reports that brick-and-mortar retailers are looking to partner with e-commerce startups as they seek to better compete online.

-The Tampa Tribune describes a new generation of men who avoid malls in favor of innovative online retailers that offer stylish menswear.

-The New York Times looks at the battle waging between readers and publishers when it comes to e-book borrowing.

-Brian Solis examines Generation C: the connected customer.

-The Washington Post covers a recent report on the decline in hybrid vehicle ownership.

-Focusing on changes afoot at New York City public libraries, The Wall Street Journal looks at how the digital era is changing the role of these institutions.

-As pizza gets more gourmet, Americans are eating more of it, according to Technomic.

No Responses to "Weekly Roundup: World Happiness Report, tech guilt and the undereducated male"

Comment Form

SIGN UP FOR OUR WEEKLY EMAIL NEWSLETTER:

New: 10 Years of 10 Trends

The Future 100

JWT AnxietyIndex

Things to Watch

  • The sharing economy grows up
    March 3, 2015 | 3:30 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-03-03 at 2.28.41 PM

    Uber recently signed a partnership with mega luxury hotel line Starwood—for every dollar a Starwood loyalty customer spends on Uber, they’ll earn a point toward free rooms and other perks.

    Continue reading “The sharing economy grows up” »

  • Digital immersive exercise
    February 25, 2015 | 4:04 pm

    immersive-fitness-the-trip

    Equinox’s new revved-up cycle class speaks to a growing exercise trend—digital immersion. This month the gym brand unveiled Pursuit, an immersive cycling concept, to limited U.S. gyms. Equinox describes the program as “an immersive studio cycling experience that uses groundbreaking gaming and data visualization to drive competition and inspire peak performance.”

    Continue reading “Digital immersive exercise” »

  • Science fare
    February 20, 2015 | 2:07 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-02-20 at 12.59.22 PM

    The worlds of science, gastronomy and art are continuing to cross-pollinate—from edible conceptual art to molecular gastronomy “lab cafés” to synesthetic dining events. Café ArtScience in Cambridge, Mass., is a recent example. Opened late last year by David Edwards, a Harvard engineering professor, the café serves whiskey “fogs” through a special carafe that turns the liquor into vapor (which means consumers don’t take in any of the calories and feel none of the intoxicating effects).

    Continue reading “Science fare” »

  • Aman’s authentic-luxe travel
    February 11, 2015 | 1:06 pm

    Amandira1_509

    As travelers continue to seek out authentic and unique experiences, hospitality brands keep raising the bar on hyper-localized offerings and exceptional access. Aman, for instance, is introducing a phinisi-style sailing ship in Indonesia, marrying the brand’s ultra-luxe sensibility with regional tradition. With an outdoor lounge and bar, the option to travel by motor, and air-conditioned cabins, the ship brings every modern comfort to an age-old means of navigating the Indonesian archipelago. Another Aman property, meanwhile, offers a dip into paleontology: Guests at Amangiri in southern Utah can join an official dig at the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, working alongside fossil experts for a half-day. The cost of getting one’s hands dirty starts at $600. (Resulting Instagram images: priceless.) —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Aman

  • Adidas’ ‘virtual line’
    February 5, 2015 | 6:55 pm

    Adidas

    Adidas’ new Confirmed app cleverly harnesses the fervor of collectors who normally line up for limited-edition shoes, moving fans onto a mobile platform. App users create an account, then get push notifications when hot new releases are on the way. Interested buyers in a given metro area—only New York City at launch—indicate their size and, if approved, receive details on where and when to pick up the shoes. An Adidas exec calls it a “virtual line.” In addition to collecting data on these super-fans, the app lets Adidas control which influencers get various styles, drives traffic to selected stores, builds additional buzz and cuts out secondary-market sellers armed with bots that secure advance orders. —Marian Berelowitz

    Image credit: Bloomberg

  • Adventurous play
    February 4, 2015 | 1:09 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-02-04 at 12.00.22 PM

    Kids will slide through a “Tunnel of Terror” and get slimy on “Mount Mud” in Tough Mudder’s new obstacle course for the 7-12 set. The endurance-challenge purveyor is partnering with European soft drink brand Britvic on Fruit Shoot Mini Mudder, with events planned for the U.S., the U.K. and Ireland. The concept caters to parents looking to pry kids away from screens and get them moving—there’s now a CrossFit offshoot for kids, starting with preschoolers—in ways that are challenging and fun.

    Continue reading “Adventurous play” »

  • Rivals joining forces
    January 26, 2015 | 7:19 pm

    Volkswagen_5 2000px-BMW.svg

    Not long ago, a collaboration between two rival companies would have been seen as a counterintuitive and perhaps desperate measure. In 2015, however, BMW’s partnership with Volkswagen on fast-charging electric vehicle stations makes the automakers look self-confident, open and serious about sustainability and the common good.  Continue reading “Rivals joining forces” »

  • Virgin Hotels
    January 21, 2015 | 1:42 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-01-21 at 12.34.58 PM

    Taking a cue from private clubs like Soho House—which now has outposts from Berlin to Chicago and Toronto—and cool hotel hangouts like the Ace, the first hotel under Virgin’s affordable-meets-aspirational banner houses a Commons Club. Offering “exclusivity for all,” the Commons hosts a “roundtable of ideas and indulgence” at a nightly social hour and includes a restaurant, bar and study area. Virgin marketing also taps into easyHotel lingo with the promise of no surprise fees and free wi-fi.

    Continue reading “Virgin Hotels” »

  • Google’s Ara phone
    January 16, 2015 | 11:51 am


    A new video from Google shows the latest prototype of its modular phone, which will launch this year in Puerto Rico. Project Ara emphasizes personalization—“What if you could make thoughtful choices about exactly what your phone does, and use it as a creative canvas to tell your own story?”—but the sustainability implications are also important.

    Continue reading “Google’s Ara phone” »

  • Nike taps into urban exploring
    January 5, 2015 | 1:13 pm

    Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 12.09.46 PM

    The city is the new terrain for Nike’s rebranded all-conditions gear, now named NikeLab ACG. Taking a cue from the urban exploration trend (“urbex”)—which involves venturing into unseen and generally off-limits structures and documenting the adventure—Nike says that “For today’s athletes, the city is the ultimate landscape,” complete with “modern obstacles” and many microclimates. Images show an intrepid explorer on a rooftop amid skyscrapers. The urban environment is now as challenging, intriguing and adventurous as the natural landscape.

  • RSSArchive for Things to Watch »