Probably the international recession is ending--so what comes next? A Sonic Boom is what comes next. Dramatic global economy growth is likely to resume, especially in the developing world, where growth is needed most. Prosperity should start back upward. Goods and service will continue getting better and cheaper. That’s the boom part. But job anxiety and economic insecurity will accelerate, too. Even as the global economy recovers, we may not feel especially good, because economic change will keep coming faster. That’s the sonic part. A sonic boom is powerful, but also nerve-shattering.
History teaches that when some crisis interrupts larger trends, as soon as the crisis concludes, the larger trends resume. Before the international economic crisis that began in late 2007, the larger trends were robust global growth and rising economic insecurity. Look for both trends to resume in a Sonic Boom world.
Many aspects of a Sonic Boom world will be wonderful. Faster, cheaper communication; easy global access to information and knowledge; rapid innovation, including for green energy; increasing freedom, especially women’s freedom; greater awareness of other cultures. Women’s freedom will itself double the world’s supply of ideas! And the more we know about each other, the less nations and cultures will fear each other, meaning militarism should decline.
But the same forces bringing about better products at lower prices, and improved communication and cultural exchange, will make jobs less secure. It’s not just autoworkers in Indiana--soon everyone everywhere will feel insecure about his or her source of income, even if the economy is basically fine.
And does globalization drive you crazy? Then brace yourself: globalization has barely gotten started. A decade from now, the world will be far more globally integrated. That’s good (ease of communication, improved understanding of other cultures) and bad (businesses will come into and go out of existences even faster).
Here are some important considerations for the Sonic Boom:
A chaotic, raucous, unpredictable, stress-inducing, free, prosperous, well-informed and very smart future is coming. Sonic Boom provides a guide to what to expect--and how to cope.--Gregg Easterbrook
I never miss the author's TMQ article on espn.com, and was VERY impressed with this book.
Examples of world cities reflecting this fast-paced globalization trend are provided in a survey explaining how the next phrase of global change will challenge us all.
I'm not even sure what he wants to argue for, except maybe that the future will be better than the present.
Easterbrook discusses the speed of change of business and society. Most of his observations are based upon solid statistics. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Scott Douglas
When I saw the title, I was not eager to read the book, but as I read each chapter I realized that all literate people should read it. Read morePublished 22 months ago by Pat Pope Rockett
An amazing book - I'll never look at the business headlines the same way again. I felt like I needed to get a highlighter and mark sections to reread later. Read morePublished on January 12, 2013 by Kathy Mccullough
This is great overview of the present condition of the world.... with some well considered views on the future. An easy read.Published on January 8, 2013 by +John Turner
Very well reasoned outlook on the state of the economy today and what's coming on a global level. Easterbrook's points are well referenced as usual, not just one person's rambling... Read morePublished on June 27, 2012 by Matt T Bray
Easterbrook is a talented writer, and there are parts of this book that are really fun to read. But overall, the predictions -- at least as to the cities that I'm familiar with,... Read morePublished on March 26, 2012 by Tung Yin
Ten years before the publication of "Sonic Book", NY Times Columnist Thomas Friedman wrote "The Lexus and the Olive Tree: Understanding Globalization", which tried to explain the... Read morePublished on February 23, 2012 by Wildness
The current media false narrative is that times are bad and it is a bad time to be alive, and especially American. Read morePublished on November 15, 2011 by Alan Jobb
Greg Easterbrook is making two big arguments in Sonic Boom: Globalization at Mach Speed.
Future Prosperity: Due to a combination of global trade, the spread of... Read more