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

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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 (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,283,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

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.

Customer Reviews

The book was well written and full of helpful insights.
Lindsey R. Whitney
Barna, who is the author of 47 books, he lays out the trends of today and what they mean for our future.
I had the pleasure of reviewing this book for Tyndale Books and I highly recommend!
Denise M. DiFalco

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 Kara Swanson on July 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Futurecast by George Barna is a fascinating look at our country and culture. It's chock-full of research and statistics that make it clear that the trajectory we're on is not particularly desirable, and there is much that we as believers in Christ can do to influence our culture in a positive way. I've long been familiar with Mr. Barna's work, and I have great respect for him. He has a keen sense of insight and discernment; he can look at macro trends and determine how they will influence us as individuals. He is a renowned researcher who is highly regarded in his field, and he is also also a passionate believer who cares deeply about society.

The first part of the book is essentially statistical in nature. He discusses changes in lifestyle and aspiration, family life, attitudes and values, and technology. In the latter half of the book, he discusses trends in religious belief and how the forces discussed earlier play into our religious habits. He also discusses demographics, and concludes with a chapter on how we can redirect trends that are not positive or honoring to Christ.

I'll admit that the first part of the book was a bit difficult to read in large doses, mainly because it is so full of information that it was hard to digest at times. But that in no way lessens its value -- it's just the kind of book that you need to read in smaller chunks to fully absorb its message.

I highly recommend this book to anyone - Christian or not - who has an interest in futurecasting, trends in society or cultural change.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the Tyndale book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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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 (www.barna.org). 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 www.georgebarna.com.

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.