Today, the only city in the UK, London, provides about 30% of the country’s economy, said Swedish economist, professor at the Stockholm School of Economics, business speaker and futurist Kjell Nordström. He is convinced that soon the world will be dominated by cities, not countries, and there will be only 500-600 such cities. While visiting Kyiv, the economist looked in the UNIT.City innovation park and became a guest of Vasyl Khmelnytsky’s YouTube channel.

About talents

"Many years ago, reading your bestseller ‘Funky Business - Talent Makes Capital Dance’, where you first stated that talent is the most important success factor in the world, I did not fully believe your message. Today, a few decades later, I am convinced that your words were extremely accurate. Has your view of talent and its value changed since then?" Vasyl Khmelnytsky asked.
"15-20 years after we first declared the importance of talent for success, this trend has only intensified. And this is true for all spheres without exception. To retain talent, you need to create an atmosphere of satisfaction in your business. Pleasure is an extremely important thing. The next step is to create an ecosystem for talent. You need to be not just a boss, but a coach for employees. The coach is not necessarily the best player in the hockey team. His task is to build the processes, motivate, solve conflicts, develop the strengths of the team," Kjell Nordström explained.

What the world will look like in 15 years

The Swedish futurist named three main trends, which, in his opinion, will determine the near future of the world:

  • The dominance of cities. Earth will become a planet of cities, not countries. We are already seeing one city in the UK, London, provide 30% of the country’s economy. According to forecasts, in 20 years about 75% of the world’s population will live in cities.

The whole world economy will be concentrated in cities, and there will be only 500-600 such cities. Cities will become huge urban areas. Why? Because living in the city gives hope for a better life, love, family and entertainment.

  • Localization. In the future, despite globalization, a business will become more local. The world will be divided into 4-5 regions, and businesses will trade primarily within their region.
  • Knowledge. In the future, a knowledge that cannot be digitalized and acquired through a gadget will be valued. In other words, knowledge gained in a particular environment will be valued more than knowledge gained from books or the Internet.

About UNIT.City

"Whatever the city, it is very important to create a location where several large companies can be located in order to cooperate, compete, argue, do joint projects, exchange employees. We once set up a business laboratory where we conducted trainings and seminars for young people. The most important thing is that students could open their own company or startup together with the professor. Some of these companies are still successful. It is very important for young people to feel confident that they can do something on their own. I have always said that ecosystems are extremely important. I believe in such ideas," explained Nordström.

Two tips for Ukraine:

  • build projects such as UNIT.City, bringing together experts from different fields;
  • ensure a stable financial and legal base in the country – it is the air for business.

You need to make life in Ukraine more attractive, he added.

For the full version of Vasyl Khmelnytsky’s interview with Kjell Nordström, follow the link.