Dr. Michael G. Zey,
EXEC. DIR. OF
THE EXPANSIONARY INSTITUTE
Michael G. Zey is the executive director of the Expansionary Institute, a Morristown,
NJ-based consulting and research organization focusing on future trends in technology,
politics, society, the economy, and the arts.
Zey is an internationally recognized futurist and sociologist who has written
several books on the future trends, social trends, the economy, and technology
and science. He enjoys visibility in policy, academic, and business circles,
as well as in the mass media. Over the last several years he has delivered speeches
and policy statements on the future for several corporations, including United
Technologies, IBM, SPRINT, the International Licensing Society, and American
in its review of his book Seizing the Future, declared that "with the
right breaks Zey could be the next Alvin Toffler". Now, a loose worldwide network,
drawn from the techno-underground, the military, and business, has formed around
the book's overall vision. Think tanks have utilized the information and perspective
in his book in their own position papers and newsletters.
addition, he is a consultant/expert to a variety of high technology/engineering
corporations, as well as to various governmental agencies, in the areas of future
planning, management, and utilization of human resources. A wide range of organizations,
such as NAFTA, educational planning associations, and Chambers of Commerce seeks
Dr. Zey's views on the future.
is also Professor of Management at Montclair State University in Upper Montclair,
LECTURES, KEYNOTE ADDRESSES, SPEECHES
Zey regularly addresses corporate conferences, trade association
meetings, and educational seminars. These include:
World Future SocietyDupont CorporationSprint, Inc.United Technologies CorporationAmerican
AirlinesIBMThe Morris County Chamber of Commerce Committee on the FutureExhibitors
Magazine national conferenceInternational Society of MentoringNew Jersey Society
of EngineersAssociation of Supervisors and Curriculum DevelopersGencorpPhi Theta
KappaLicensing Executive SocietyAmerican Association of Retired PersonsAmerican
Society of Training and Development.The Mentoring Association
Print media interviews and quotations have appeared in: The Wall Street Journal,
The Futurist, The MBA Executive, Entrepreneur, P.O.V., Success, Controller Magazine,
Executive Strategies, Management Review, The Academy of Management Review, Forbes,
Training, Training and Development, Working Woman, The Washington Times, La Figaro,
Sales and Marketing Management, The Newark Star Ledger, Insight, and numerous
other periodicals and national newsletters.
Dr. Zey has been on two separate national book tours, has appeared on over a
hundred local radio and TV programs, as well as national and international radio
hook-ups such as the USA Radio Network, the National Business Network, Public
Radio International, and Radio Free Europe.
of the major television programs he has appeared on are:
on Trends (Fox News Network)Business Day (CNN)The
Wall Street Journal Report (CBS)The World Business Roundup (CNBC)The
Turning PointAmerica's Vital Signs (CNBC)
PRESS HAS TO SAY ABOUT MICHAEL G. ZEY
Montclair State University
Zey is a nationally recognized expert on the information revolution and the role
it plays in the development of the Macroindustrial Era. He is working on another
book that examines the extent to which cultural, political, social and economic
factors help and hinder the development, introduction and ultimate acceptance
of new technologies.
am examining the role these factors play in successful implementation of breakthroughs
and innovations such as genetically produced foods, nuclear fusion, space technology,
cloning, control of weather, space exploration and colonization, subterranean
cities, the hypersonic plane, the high-speed rail and genetic engineering," he
Zey is a consultant to corporations, such as IBM, AT&T and DuPont, as well
as to government agencies on future planning and mentoring.
another project, Dr. Zey is exploring the role information technologies, such
as computers, virtual reality and new communication devices, will play in scientific
and technological development. His research takes an in-depth look at how information
sciences and information technologies will help organizations and society achieve
progress in fields such as biotechnology, energy, aerospace, transportation and
physics. The results of this study will be published in The Futurist magazine,
for which Dr. Zey is a regular contributor.
Zey is developing what he terms "cybermentoring," a set of methods by which companies
can maintain formal mentoring programs even if program participants are in different
locations. "I use the word 'cybermentoring' to refer to a broad range of electronic
modalities by which mentor and protégé can communicate and still retain
much of the intimacy of the physical one on one interface," he explains. "I examine
the efficacy of modalities such as e-mail, telephone, video-conferencing, Webcams
and virtual reality to replicate the in person mentor-protégé interface." Dr.
Zey's work also looks at other research that compares electronic and in-person
communication, and focuses on the experiences of companies already using cybermentoring.
students play a variety of roles in these projects, from actual research and
writing summaries to brainstorming with me about the subject areas," he says.
Many of them continue to work on Dr. Zey's projects after graduation.
Zey Rank: Associate Professor, Management
Education: Ph.D., Rutgers University
The Future Factor: The
Five Forces Transforming Our Lives and Shaping Human Destiny, McGraw-Hill,
the Future: The Dawn of the Macro-industrial Era, Transaction Publishers,
the Future: How the Coming Revolution in Science, Technology and Industry Will
Expand the Frontiers of Human Potential and Reshape the Planet, Simon and
Mentor Connection: Strategic Alliances in Corporate Life, Transaction Press,
Into The Future
(Morris Magazine - February 2000)
not only possible, but likely, that intelligent life will one day be found on
Mars. And it might look like your next door neighbor.
fact, it might be your next door neighbor.
we terra form mars, it will be the largest public works project in the history
of our species," said Michael Zey, Ph.D., a "futurist" and professor of management
at Montclair State University.
Mars in the image of the Earth is a humanistic pursuit," he argues.
colonization of space, the pitfalls of a "virtual society," the nature of human
existence, the sonorities of a Philip Glass Symphony: pick one, and buckle up.
A conversational journey with Zey, executive director of the Morristown - based
Expansionary Institute, moves with the speed of a bullet train and the urgency
of an atomic clock.
just when you think this futurist is racing to embrace all that the computer
age portends, he surprises with an observation on the necessity of real human
reality can never replace human contact," says the Morristown resident. "Can
you see a father video conferencing with his daughter at her birthday party?
Or at a Little League game? It's never going to be the same."
work - revolving around his best-known book, Seizing the Future (which
was recently revised and re-issued) - has made him a recognized authority on
social trends and the future of the business landscape. He's appeared on CBS,
CNBC, The Fox News Network and CNN.
forthcoming book - which is finished except for the title - will deal with what
Zey calls "The NEXT big question: what's real and what's virtual?"
a recent wide-ranging discussion of life as we practice it in the year 2000,
Zey waxed philosophical about the advantages of technology ("bullet trains...
New York to Chicago in one hour") and the drawbacks of internet-fueled workforce
mobility ("disposable employees... and the shorter life span of the average employee,
the less institutional memory").
he's bullish on the future. He sees society rebuilding itself upon the bedrock
of the past: the family unit.
technologies that are developing are actually going to make it easier to exist
as an independent domicile," argues the business-suited Zey. "A lot of people
mistakenly view working at home as an intrusion, but in the nineteenth century,
many home were working farms. So the future is really a return to the past."
Takes A Bold Look At What The Future Holds
doesn't have a crystal ball, but Dr. Michael Zey of the Management Department
holds a vision of the future in which communication will improve, time spent
commuting will decrease and nations will work together on large-scale endeavors
such as space travel. And this future may be closer than we think. Zey believes
the next ten years will be a time of tremendous change and progress, a topic
he discusses in his sixth book, The Future Factor: The Five Forces Transforming
our Lives and Shaping Human Destiny (McGraw-Hill), which hit bookshelves
his new book, Zey explores current and new technology in bio-science, manufacturing,
aerospace, computers and genetic engineering, and how that technology will change
our lives. The second aspect of the book tackles what Zey calls the "why" question. "I
wanted to explore why we are trying to improve ourselves," he said. "Is it transcendent?
Is something, beyond our understanding, motivating us? Many people are asking
what will happen, but not why."
thoughts are an attempt to dispel negative ideas about the future. From last
year's Y2K panic to the threat of overpopulation to reservations about space
travel, Zey has noticed a trend in anti-technological thinking.
consider my ideas beyond optimism," he said. "I think human ingenuity always
finds ways to accommodate change."
his predictions, Zey believes innovations in transportation, even more so than
the Internet, will have a strong impact on our society.
so many people believe we're living in the 'age of information.' In reality,
our society still exists on the basics and can't survive without them," said
Zey, who was named one of "Five Jerseyans to watch in the 21st Century" by Suburban
Essex and Morris Magazine. "If we tried to exist mainly through Web pages,
we'd become a secondary society." The introduction of high-speed technology could
change the way we think about communicating - and commuting - across the country.
think the real advantage will occur when we can travel on a high-speed rail," he
said. "When I can get to Chicago in 45 minutes by train, I'm going to see that
as a major breakthrough." Literally interacting with people in another city will
not only help workers use their time more efficiently, but will improve real
world relationships as well. "Right now there is a lot of communication through
e-mail and the Internet. We're communicating in a way we never thought possible,
but that's not necessarily aiding our interpersonal connections with others."
relationships come into play as we enter what Zey considers the macroindustrial
era, one in which societies will embark on large-scale production.
it's satellites, buildings or cities, things are going to be huge," said Zey. "There
won't be just one country exploring space. Something like this would require
several countries to collaborate."
exploration is one area Zey sees as part of a natural progression of investigation
and advancement. "Movement is important, it's a liberating experience for human
beings. Historically, that was seen as people migrated from Europe to the United
States," he said.
together is the key to improving our human relationships across the globe. "People
will need to see each other," he said. "Having co-workers from all over the world
will lead us to discover similarities in each other, realizing that we are all
members of the same species." With more collaboration, Zey foresees a growth
of understanding and tolerance that may put an end to racism.
basic forms of communication still outweigh the importance of the Internet, Zey,
who holds a doctorate in sociology, believes more good than bad will come from
new forms of technology.
days don't exist anymore," he said. "Now employees can use e-mail and faxes to
communicate even if they're not in the office." Eventually, Zey anticipates virtual
reality playing an instrumental role in workplace communication." It will be
possible to have a meeting using virtual reality. People will be able to see
and interact with those who are hundreds of miles away."
much will change over the next decade a great deal of technology already has
become part of our daily lives. Education is just one area that has already seen
the benefits of innovation.
State was quick to embrace technology," said Zey. "I think the University becoming
digitized has made me a better researcher. Information is not only text-bound
anymore so I can come into class with something 'hot off the press.' "
isn't worried about being replaced by a computer. "Teaching in the classroom
will always exist, but now it can be supplemented by distance learning," He said. "We
can afford to have technology and science take a backseat because they have the
potential for making the learning process easier."