The happy growth for a changing world

The only happiness resides in growth, or we have always hoped so. Surely, no one feels happy if something decreases or dwindles. Yet, growth has never been an automatic step for humanity, and so is it now. It is our duty to defend and nurture this idea in a sustainable and “happy” way.

Started in Milan, the Festival of Growth will stay in Rome until 19th March and will then move to 11 other cities in Italy during 2016, creating diverse opportunities for debate about how to recognise growth where that is.

I had the pleasure of taking part in the opening debate of the Festival and in the first panel, with Ottavia Ricci from the Italian Ministry of Arts and Culture, Maximo Ibarra, CEO of Wind, Gustavo Piga from the University Tor Vergata and Massimiliano Valerii, Director of CENSIS.

All contributions highlighted different perspectives, different eyes upon growth, that need to be necessarily build in a collaborative way. With all our resources first, the so-called “human capital”, before using technology. According to Maximo Ibarra, in fact, a collaborative model pushes growth ahead and technology is just a mean for it. This process starts with education, of course, and it should not happen in sylos, not vertically but horizontally.

And if Steve Jobs created the appeal of his products by reducing things – that is, taking out the keyboard, the mouse and transforming the big, old-style computers in devices anyone can bring in a small bag, or even a pocket – then growth starts happening by listening. Stepping outside our comfort zone, being “uncomfortable” when something goes wrong and fixing it in favour of many. Starting by thinking jugaad.

Everything should be turned over. Every old-fashioned paradigms, models that belong to the past, perspectives broken under the inevitable pressure of the passing years. Today to young people, those who were born under the sign of the crisis, work does not (or no longer) mean doing what is needed to earn the money to survive, rather it is a passion above all. Therefore, it is extremely important to give those who have creative ideas the best conditions to put them into practice.

The world is not changing, the world has already changed. We can merely state it, or decide we want to take part to the change too.

“Growth is never by mere chance; it is the result of forces working together” (James Cash Penney)

 

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