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Futurecast: What Today's Trends Mean for Tomorrow's World Hardcover – May 18, 2011

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From the Inside Flap

There are three types of people when it comes to the future: those who will watch what happens, those who will make it happen, and those who will wonder what happened. Which will you be?

Our society has widespread and unprecedented access to information, but what do we do with it all? Who do we trust to accurately track our societal trends, interpret them, and see possibilities for the future—and how can we help to shape that future?

The answers lie in Futurecast, an insider glimpse of today’s world—and tomorrow’s. Researcher George Barna will inform you about the trends that are soon to change your life and environment, equip you to face them, and encourage you to stand among the visionaries who create the future rather than react to it.

From the Back Cover

New information on the trends that are shaping our world—and are about to change your life. Our world is changing at a pace beyond anything ever seen in history. But where will all these cultural shifts lead? What’s in store for our government, economy, families, and churches? We need accurate information that will give us a real sense of what’s happening now—and what’s about to happen—in key areas of our lives, including Family life, Technology, Media and entertainment, Attitudes and values, Religious beliefs and behavior

In Futurecast, bestselling author and renowned researcher George Barna presents a timely look at the world we’re creating every day. He offers solid data to show the path society is on, a guide to what’s coming next, and unparalleled insights into how we can prepare for the changes that lie ahead.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: BarnaBooks (May 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1414324065
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414324067
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.2 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,216,789 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

George Barna was raised and educated on the East Coast before moving to California in the early 1980s. He held executive positions in advertising, public policy, political campaigns, and media/marketing research before beginning his own company, the Barna Research Group (now The Barna Group), in 1984. The firm analyzes American culture and creates resources and experiences designed to facilitate moral and spiritual transformation. Located in Ventura, California, The Barna Group provides primary research as well as developmental resources and analytic diagnostics. The company has served several hundred parachurch ministries and thousands of Christian churches throughout the country. It has also supplied research to for-profit corporations such as Ford Motor Company, The Walt Disney Company, Visa USA, and Prudential, and has assisted the U.S. Navy and U.S. Army as well.

To date, George Barna has written more than 40 books, predominantly in the areas of leadership, trends, spiritual development, and church health. Included among them are bestsellers such as Revolution, Transforming Children into Spiritual Champions, The Frog in the Kettle, The Power of Vision, and Pagan Christianity? Several of his books have received national awards. He has also written for numerous periodicals and has published various syndicated reports on topics related to faith and lifestyle. He also writes a bimonthly research report, The Barna Update, which is accessed by hundreds of thousands of people through his firm's Web site ( His work is frequently cited as an authoritative source by the media. He has been hailed as "the most quoted person in the Christian church today" and is counted among its most influential leaders. In 2009, George initiated Metaformation, a new organization designed to help people maximize their potential. More information about his current projects is available from

Barna is a popular speaker at ministry conferences around the world and has taught at several universities and seminaries. He has served as a pastor of a large multiethnic church, has been involved in several church plants, and currently leads an organic church. He has served on the board of directors of various organizations. After graduating summa cum laude from Boston College, Barna earned two master's degrees from Rutgers University. At Rutgers, he was awarded the Eagleton Fellowship. He also received a doctorate from Dallas Baptist University. He lives with his wife and their three daughters in Southern California. He enjoys spending time with his family, writing, reading novels, playing and listening to guitar, relaxing on the beach, visiting bookstores, and eating pizza.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Ethan R. Longhenry on June 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
We live in changing times. What does it all mean? How far have we come? All of these questions ultimately lead to a rather big question: where is it all headed?

Even in seemingly less transitional periods in history, mankind has always sought to know what will happen in the future. While it is foolish to attempt to make grand declarations about the nature of the future, it is possible to get a glimpse of what might be based upon current trends-- and this is what George Barna attempts to do in Futurecast: What Today's Trends Mean for Tomorrow's World. He uses the data obtained by Barna studies over the past few years to chart the ideas, attitudes, and behavioral patterns of Americans of all ages, and based upon the trends that exist today, seeks to present a plausible picture of the types of attitudes that will be prevalent over the next few decades.

The book begins with more "secular" themes, describing current trends regarding lifestyle, family, attitudes, values, media, technology, and the like. Most of what is described in this section would be intuitive for a lot of people: expectation of greater use of online and electronic media; growing diversity in lifestyles and choices and the acceptance thereof; weakening commitments to the concept of absolute truth, let alone morality. One sobering statistic: 15% of polled teenagers believe that there is such a thing as absolute truth. That means that 85% have bought in to the relativist/postmodernist view of truth to some extent-- and that will impact the future!

One trend that made sense when I heard it yet with which I was not as familiar was the growing acceptance of mediocrity in work on account of the emphasis on process.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By William Dahl VINE VOICE on November 16, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In George Barna's most recent work, FUTURECAST - what TODAY'S TRENDS mean for TOMORROW'S WORLD (Tyndale House Publishers) we are, once again, provided with a synthesis of piles - mounds - mountains of research regarding the spiritual health of America - from the Christian perspective.

Needless to say, America is struggling through difficult times.

Enter George Barna and FUTURECAST. At his own admission, Barna has a new perspective on a fundamental element seemingly overlooked or currently missing as a key to the "spiritual health" of America...a return to "the way Jesus did things - changing one life at a time."

In the first part of the book, Barna characterizes the distinct changes that have become resident in America since 2007: loss of illusory wealth, heightened uncertainty, a decline in hopefulness (optimism), fear, etc.

Barna cites a "polarization within the American population regarding moral and spiritual matters that boils down to an inconsistency between how people see themselves and how they behave. (p. 11-12). Furthermore, he characterizes this phenomenon in this way: "Americans have become comfortable maintaining a belief in opposites." Translation: saying one thing and behaving contrary to that verbal utterance.

The book delves extensively into the issues of American family life, attitudes and values, media,technology and entertainment, Religious beliefs, Religious behavior, Institutional faith, Demographics and a conclusion that "Together we can redirect these trends."

Frankly, there is much that is new in this book. To attempt to summarize it here would be a task that I become weary even contemplating. THIS IS A BOOK WORTHY OF STUDY.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Read for Life on September 5, 2011
Format: Hardcover
If you enjoy reading about statistics and trends, those changes that affect families, churches, government, and economy, you will enjoy Future Cast. Renowned researcher George Barna includes some new and interesting information on how the world around us is changing, including how technology is changing the way we think and act. He not only presents the information, but equips and encourages the reader to shape the future. This book presents a lot of interesting factual tidbits, but also encouragement on how to live as Christ followers in this day and age.

Based on research, here are some interesting points:

"Technology provides useful tools, but we must be careful not to take the lazy way and use technology as a substitute for relationship. Life is about knowing, loving, and serving God and other people. Technology simply provides tools for the journey. " p. 25

"Today constructs such as citizenship, the common good, and even community interest are foreign to our way of thinking. Instead, it's all about me." p. 60

"The research shows an embarrassing gap between what the Christian public describes as morally acceptable media fare and the media content they personally consume." p. 120

Topics covered include: lifestyles, family life, attitudes & values, media and technology, religious beliefs and behavior, institutional faith, and redirecting trends.

Although there maybe what seems to be a lot of `bad news' in this book, Barna also encourages people to live out their faith and make a difference in the world.

I found this book detailed, fascinating and informative! If you like learning about faith and culture and how our world is quickly changing, you will appreciate reading this, too.

I have received a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes from Tyndale House. All opinions are my own.
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