This election year, Marketplace is casting its eyes toward the future, asking how the country can address long-term opportunities and threats — the ones that don’t fit into a single federal budget or election cycle. We'll imagine and ask you, if the next president were to appoint a Cabinet member to worry about future generations, what would be job one? Got an idea? Tell us here.
Kristina Persson is Sweden's Minister for Strategic Development — it's her job to think about the future and make sure Sweden is well-positioned for it. She joined Marketplace Morning Report host David Brancaccio to talk about her role, and why more governments around the world should appoint future thinkers.
On her mission and whether the U.S. should appoint a "Secretary of the Future":
My mission is to see to it that there is a long-term perspective in the development of new ideas. I think it’s a wonderful idea if the United States would have a Minister for the future … it would be wonderful if I had colleagues around the world.
On the major challenges of her job:
Bureaucracy can be an obstacle for what I’m trying to do, and the lack of interest sometimes of the media of these long-term issues… so communication is a challenge.
On why a dedicated person is needed to focus on the future:
You could say that it should be the Prime Minister who is responsible and in charge of future issues, but he is very much occupied with a lot of things on a daily basis and he needs this support from somebody else.
Click the above audio player to hear more.