Nations, People, Identity and Global Markets
Devolution, localism, selfies and separatism
Thursday 25thSeptember 2014 – 08.30 – 09.30
Happenstance, 1a Ludgate Hill, London EC4M 7AA
The September 2014 Trajectory Trends Breakfast takes place a week after Scotland votes in a devolution referendum that has surprised many by the passion stirred and the closeness of the polls.
Whatever the result it is clear that the terms of the relationship between Scotland and the other nations of the United Kingdom have been changed forever – although the full picture cannot be known at this point or for some time to come.
This makes for a particularly apposite time for us in the UK to consider the nature of contemporary identity – while the violence and bloodshed in Eastern Ukraine offers a stark reminder of Europe’s bloody history – in contrast to the regional unity forged through the European Union.
In the Middle East we have seen the conflict between Israel and Palestine explode again while we have borne shocked witness to the brutal emergence of the Islamic State movement – with its avowed aim of creating a caliphate across long established state borders (Iraq, Lebanon and Syria).
How do these events relate to the emergence of an international consumer class, or global elite? And how do these audiences relate to their populations relative to their supra-national peers? What does it all tell us about our ideas of progress and international development?
Closer to home, we have long reflected on the growth of individualism, not least in the context of our consumer society while there’s been much debate as to the role of social media in creating new networks and communities while enabling individuals to juggle multiple identities and project curated images of their lives.
So what are the key elements of contemporary identity for different audiences today – how strong is the brute force of geo-political or national identity in the face of class, ethnic, religious or consumerist alternatives, how powerful are nation states relative to regional or city identities, what impacts can we see from the rise of digital media and global connectivity and how powerful a driver is socio-economic circumstance?
If we have always had a portfolio approach to identity what has changed in the contemporary context and what are the new opportunities and challenges?
It’s a fascinating subject to explore and we very much hope that you will join us for what is sure to be a stimulating hour of discussion.
To book your place simply mail Michael Brennan @ firstname.lastname@example.org