I’m attending IMPACT 2009 in San Diego this week, Schwab’s annual conference held exclusively for independent investment advisors. It’s a great opportunity for professional development and to gain insights from leading minds.

In the opening session this morning, Erik Peterson, senior vice president of the Center for Strategic International Studies (CSIS), presented The Seven Revolutions, which forecasts key global trends up to the year 2025 that could dramatically affect government policy, business and potentially the investment markets. They include:

  1. Population
  2. Resource management and environmental stewardship
  3. Technological innovation and diffusion
  4. The development and dissemination of information and knowledge
  5. Economic integration
  6. The nature and mode of conflict
  7. The challenge of governance

In discussing these trends, Peterson dished up a lot of food for thought. For example, he cited the dramatic growth of non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Such private organizations are gaining more influence, in some cases, than many governmental agencies or groups of days past. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Peterson noted, paid out more funds in its first two years than did the World Health Organization (WHO). Such a shift in control could dramatically change the future landscape of social programs around the globe.

Learn more about Peterson’s perspective online at http://gsi.csis.org

Tomorrow, I’ll sit in on a session with former Republican Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Secretary of Labor under President Clinton Robert Reich. Their conversation on the next wave of regulation and policy should be interesting, to say the least! Check back for highlights

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