Nov top #signalsofchange

Signal of change / Nov top #signalsofchange

By Futures Centre / 26 Nov 2016

The world is on an unsustainable path, but powerful ideas and innovations that could help solve social, economic and environmental challenges are emerging all the time. We need to uncover and understand these opportunities in order to make the most of them.

Here are this month's top #signalsofchange spotted by the Futures Centre community of trackers. Each represents unprecedented ideas, innovations, behaviours and applications with transformative potential. What do these new developments mean for the future we want to build?

1. Ethiopia’s $4 billion electric railway links capital to coast

A new Chinese-funded electric railway means cheaper and more reliable transportation of goods between Djibouti, a major port, and Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. The railway link will cut the journey from three days to just 12 hours, delivering freight cargo and offering passenger transportation. The railway line is part of a 5,000km rail project set to improve Ethiopia’s economic potential. More...

2. Backfeed: an operating system for decentralised organisations

A new operating system for organisations, called Backfeed, aims to enable "large-scale, free and systematic cooperation between thousands of people without the coordination of any central authority". It is founded upon a peer-to-peer evaluation system, based on tokens that are recorded on blockchains. The tokens represent the perceived value of individual contributions to a community and enable the organisation to compensate accordingly. More...

3. Startup GoMango reduces loss of perishables with intelligent refrigerated boxes

Startup GoMango seeks to tackle food waste in India by addressing poor storage facilities, inefficient logistics and trucks via the GoMango. The GoMango is a modular refrigerated box which can be rented out for low cost. Each box can easily transport perishables on any vehicle, and so could be used as a fleet or in a network - like shipping containers. More...

4. Malawi female chief annuls 850 child marriages and sends girls back to school

'Whether you like it or not, I want these marriages to be terminated’, Theresa Kachindamoto, the appointed Chief of Malawi since 2003, told the 900,000 population of the Dedza District, Central Malawi. She commits to annul 850 marriages and send the girls back to school during her time in office. Kachindamoto told UN Women, “They must go to school. No child should be found at home or doing household chores during school time.” Not only have Malawi appointed a female chief, but also have elected their first female president, Joyce Banda, in May 2014. More...

5. Portugal opens national budget to participation: a world first

Proposals are already being submitted to the world's first national-scale participatory budget, due to launch in January 2017. Citizens are invited to share ideas for government expenditure, and vote on which proposals should be adopted. One early suggestion is to equip nurseries with technology to teach children about robotics. More...

What might the implications of this be? What related signals of change have you seen?

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