May 22, 2008
Cultural Creatives to Dominate in the Age of EnlightenedEconomics
era. After much thought andresearch, I believe it is likely to resemble that of what sociologist Paul Ray callsthe “Cultural Creative.” He coined the term back in the 1990s after performingtwo extensive surveys on Americans’ psychological values for the U.S.Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to help understand and categorizeAmericans’ values to assist in the development of their environmental policies.
Who are the Cultural Creatives (CCs)?
In 2000, Dr. Ray co-authored with Sherry Ruth Anderson the book,
where they describe CCs as caring
“…. deeply about ecology and saving the planet, about relationships, peace, and social justice, about self-actualization, spirituality, and self-expression.”
They suggested that in the year2000 there were more than 50 million CCs in America (about 25 per cent of theU.S. adult population) and a further 80-90 million in Europe. In a privateconversation I had with Dr. Ray in 2002, he indicated that CCs could dominatewestern populations as early as 2020. I believe a case could now be made thatthis will occur much earlier than that.Spiritual and personal development were at the centre of the values of thefounding ‘core’ CCs. Referring to the early development of CCs, Dr. Ray and Ms.Anderson state
, “As the ranks of beginners kept growing [in the 1960s],hundreds of thousands stayed with the process and went deeper. By the 1980s,the ‘movements’ numbers had swelled to a million or so, and by the 1990s, tensof millions were involved… But the consciousness movement-full of contradictions, shallow and deep, bubbling with new developments-is still in the phase of accelerating growth.”
CCs imbibe the values of
As explained in my various posts (
, etc.) the fundamentalshift I envisage in individual consciousness is towards that of global ecology,spirituality and social justice. This fits very well with the definition of CCs.Though Dr. Ray has not completed further surveys in recent years as to thegrowth of CCs in western or global populations, it is clear from the enormousescalation of interest in green products and services, the environment, ethicalinvesting, corporate social responsibility, spirituality, etc., that the numbers inthe CC camp are growing significantly.The ranks of the CCs are being filled from a group Dr. Ray refers to as ‘Moderns.’ The Moderns are the governing group in western societies. Theirprimary values concern money and status.