This week, Go Further with Ford 2012 is bringing together key trend spotters as well as Ford designers, engineers and scientists to explore what’s influencing consumers’ choices.

From the changing landscape of urbanization to the psychology behind the latest environmental trends, Ford Motor Company will be taking attendees (including myself) behind the scenes for in-depth discussions, interviews and an exclusive look at Ford’s innovative solutions for the future. The event is taking place in Dearborn, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, where the company is based. I have to say, I’m really excited to hear some of the great speakers talk about the global trends facing consumers today and how it affects their decisions now and going forward.

Below is a summary of  some of the great topics up for discussion:

Age of Accessible Design

Consumers today are what some could call “design aficionados”.  From Fashion and electronics, to housewares and automobiles, consumers have come to expect products that not only deliver the functionality and quality but also the style, personalization and in most cases, a designer label without the “designer” price tag.  The consumer’s eye for design and aesthetics has transformed product expectations and in this session you will hear from designers, product developers and architects to discuss the age of democratization of design, exploring the new trends and philosophies that will shape consumer goods in the future.

Streamline & Simplify

Technology – If there’s one category in which consumers are willing to commit, it’s tech. Worldwide, high-tech devices and services are fast becoming as integral to people as food and clothing. The latest technology is much more than just a luxury, from the advancements in voice recognition, DIY health solutions and affordable touchscreens.  But when does all of this tech, become too much?  This session will explore the rapid growth and expectations of consumer technologies, as developers and brands battle information overload and consumer sentiment to actually ‘de-tech’ their lifestyles.


We are part of the fastest urban boom in history.  Consumers are being drawn to new opportunities in urban centers and are demanding innovation tailored to their unique circumstances more than ever.  With this urban boom, there’s never been a more pressing need to rethink the rise of urban centers and communities.  From health issues and quality of living, to the need for transportation, discuss and experience how the rapid growth of mega cities is driving the future of mobility, technology and consumer consumption.


People are becoming increasingly conscious of the impact of their everyday consumption on the environment. Owning or using fewer goods/resources or divvying up consumption with others is seen as helping the planet.  In this session, Eco-cycology will explore the psychology (and solutions) behind the next ‘green’ movement and how consumer preferences and choices will shape what it really means to be eco-friendly.

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