A Spanish national college basketball champion turned global sociologist, Professor Mauro Guillén, of the University of Pennsylvania, speaks to Asia Times about a very different world that lies ahead of us. It is time for businesses to jump on the ride to the future.

The director of the Lauder Institute for Management & International Studies at the US university predicts new growth dynamics such as urbanization and demographic shifts will render everything in the world as we know it a dusty volume in the history archives. He suggests that companies pay extra attention to the rising concentration of wealth among women across the world.

The highly engaging Dr Guillén shared new perspectives to a roomful of writers in Hong Kong attending a seminar for business journalists by The Wharton School, held in conjunction with the Wharton Global Forum Hong Kong 2017 that took place only days ahead of city’s 20th anniversary of the handover in 1997.

A congregation of more than 800 Penn alumni and friends gathered to discuss both challenges and opportunities of disruptive innovations in the ever-evolving global landscape, opened by keynote speeches from former Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd and Hong Kong’s Chief Executive-elect Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor.