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  • On October 31st the UN proclaimed that Earth’s seven-billionth inhabitant had arrived. Over eight million babies have been born since I wrote my previous blog on consumption. The figures are staggering. However, we know that the threat to the planet has less to do with the absolute number than with what, how and how much we consume. The challenge of how we meet the nutrition, health, shelter, apparel, energy, and entertainment needs of the next billion without further eroding the planet’s finite resources is surely among the most significant of our time.

    In my last blog on consumption, I highlighted four trends…

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  • A global culture of consumerism has firmly taken hold – the average British woman buys half her body weight in clothing every year; a typical American purchases more stuff every day than an average American weighs; more than 30 million tons of food was dumped in landfills in the US in 2009; and the largest shopping centre in Europe has just opened as the gateway to the London 2012 Olympics. Yet as resources become more constrained, economies stall and businesses begin to think more innovatively about different ways of delivering value to the customer, there are some signals of hope for a reversal in the way that consumers value and use products and services.

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  • Get Well Soon

    13 Jul 2011Caren Holzman

    The Lancet recently published a major international study revealing that 347 million adults worldwide suffered from diabetes in 2008 – a number that has doubled since 1980 and exceeds that shown in previous studies. As it was a scientific study, it doesn’t address the staggering economic implications of this number in terms of lost productivity and exorbitant healthcare costs for treatment and support. However, a study also published in June in Value in Health contends that nearly one in five people with diabetes are regularly unable to attend a full day at work due to disruption caused by episodes of dangerously low blood sugar. And one in every ten healthcare dollars in the US is spent on diabetes and its complications.

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