Most of our human settlements: cities, and urban and rural communities are over managed and under led. As the interconnectedness of globalisation grows, market forces are increasingly shaping the forms and functions of human settlements. Vision and strategic intervention have lessened in importance and management has grown at the expense of leadership. Leadership has not been reinvented to operate in an interconnected globalisated planet. However the tools of leadership that have worked in the past are increasingly ineffective in a globalising interconnected world and marketplace of the 21st century. There has not been enough consideration about how the development of human settlements can be shaped and their habitability improved in an era of open global markets and trade, and of increasingly unempowered governments.
The future of our cities and urban areas is interconnected to the future of rural and regional communities. At the beginning of the new Millennium, there are many global cities but very few global rural communities. If one looks at the industrial structures of most rural areas in 2001 one discovers that the industrial structure is remarkably similar to their industrial structure in 1901. It is as if the whole of the 20th century bypassed rural communities and all the new job categories and new industries of the 20th century were born in the cities. Seventy percent of the job categories and products and services of the year 2020 have yet to be invented. Now in an era of globalising markets, universal connectivity and wider access to eduction and knowledge, it is now possible to ensure that many of the new job categories and new industries born in the 21st century can be founded in rural areas.