It turns out that the Internet does change everything.” States author Don Tapscott for point #7. The focus of this discussion was the power of social networking. In fact, as Tapscott points out, if Facebook were a nation it would be more populous than Russia. Going back to point # 6, the question can be asked ‘where does this leave the traditional nation-state’?  Can nations harness the power of the internet or will they try to control it. Business is already trying to understand and create best practices around harnessing social networking to achieve business objectives. Workshops and speakers on the topic are proliferating, but can business or government retrieve the power that individuals have gained via the Internet?

And, speaking of individuals, the role of women in point # 8. Girls, women, and gender: A sea change is underway.  The purchasing power, and so-called “girl effect” in developing countries was extensively discussed. However, discussions also revolved around the continued weakness for women from a political perspective. In fact, even though it is recognized that women have the strongest role in purchase power, yet building women’s power in both government and financial venues could “be key in refocusing our political and economic efforts away from consumerism.” Lofty goals, but what does this really mean globally? Will balancing gender roles in government, financial , and corporate circles around the world bring stronger economies, greater propensity for peace, a new world order? Heady topics – and at the end of the day, what if any of this should global companies pay attention to now?

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