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Are We Seeing A V-Shaped Economic Recovery? And What Will A GenY Economy Look Like?

Posted by: Bruce Nussbaum on August 7, 2009

This Great Recession has fooled everyone, especially economists, in its shape, severity and longevity. The unexpected drop in the US unemployment rate to 9.4% from 9.5% leads me to wonder if the next surprise will be on the upside and that economic growth in the next two quarters may be a lot stronger than expected. Business leaders are already changing their conversation from cost-cutting to growing the top line. Soon they’ll start putting their money behind the talk. The smartest CEOs are already investing more in innovation and the design of new products and services to get ready for the takeoff.

There are a lot of caveats to this rosy scenario. The most important is that this recovery will probably be very different from earlier ones because the US consumer is tapped out. Demand from consumers will be lower than earlier recoveries. Will Chinese and Indian consumers take up the slack? Maybe. Both countries are pulling the global economy out of this recession—for the first time ever. So maybe they will continue.

The real question for the future is what will a GenY economy look like? The Boomer economy of consumerism is being replaced in the US by a Gen Y economy. But what will drive GenY economic growth? What are the values of this generation and what is valuable to it? Companies better start thinking about this. At Parsons, we are creating a GenY Research Lab to dig deeply into the contours of GenY culture and what a GenY Economy will look like. Please send in any ideas on this.

Reader Comments


October 15, 2009 9:16 PM

Hi Bruce, how is the development of the Research Lab coming along? I think "Gen Y economy" could encompass many subjects and areas of exploration beyond financial -- the social economy, the market place of ideas, & how my generation might reshape and transform all of them. Read recently that Gen Y will be 100 million strong by 2016. That's a lot of young folks and a lot of potential power. I'm co-founder of an organization, IFWERANIT, that's exploring some of the same questions via video interviews with GenYers who are thinking and doing differently in creating new kinds of businesses & new kinds of lifestyles...would be very interested in hearing about your progress and sharing ideas. ps - great chat with Tim was a very insightful conversation to be a part of.


June 15, 2010 2:17 AM

отлично написано, у автора прям талант

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Want to stop talking about innovation and learn how to make it work for you? Bruce Nussbaum takes you deep into the latest thinking about innovation and design with daily scoops, provocative perspectives and case studies. Nussbaum is at the center of a global conversation on the growing discipline of innovation and the deepening field of design thinking. Read him to discover what social networking works—and what doesn’t. Discover where service innovation is going and how experience design is shaping up. Learn which schools are graduating the most creative talent and which consulting firms are the hottest. And get his take on what the smartest companies are doing in the U.S., Asia and Europe, far ahead of the pack.

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