The book, Blueprints for 2050 is inspired by forecasts that by 2050, the Philippines will be among the world’s 20 biggest economies.

Price Waterhouse Coopers, in its 2015 report, The World in 2050, also forecast that by 2020 we will be in the Top 30.

In our climb to the Top 20, we will stand right next to Canada and Italy, outrunning countries like Switzerland, the Netherlands, Poland and Australia. Sound incredible? We’re not all that far away, actually. Our current ranking is 39, a spot we inched up to in the last five years after hovering in the high 40s and 50s since 2000.

A better measure of growth is GDP per capita—that is, the gross domestic product or income of the country divided by the population. We may have the 39th largest economy in the world, but when you divide the income by 101 million Filipinos, we rank 119th out of 188 countries—in the bottom third of the global community. And that’s up from 124th place in 2009—our lowest ranking since the 1960s. Right now, we’re in the company of countries like Angola, Guyana, and the Republic of Congo.

The exciting thing is, if we fulfill our potential and climb 19 places up the GDP ladder from 39 to 20, the impact per head will not just be a skip from 119th place to 100. HSBC The World in 2050 January 2012, forecasts we will leap 47 places from 119th to 72nd. Why? We’re not having as many children as before—remember when our grandmas were married off at 16 to have six to ten kids? We now average three to four children per family, and by 2050, the norm will be one to two kids, with a growing number of adults deciding not to have any.

By HSBC’s reckoning, from USD1215 per year per head, our GDP per capita in 2050 will increase to 10,893, slightly higher than that of Saudi Arabia, Argentina, Portugal and Oman today—9833, 10,517, 11,588 and 10,779 respectively. For additional perspective, the GDP per capita of Singapore is 34,110, Thailand 2744, China 2579, Indonesia 1178, and Vietnam 674.

Exerting a positive impact on our quality of life is the fact that the Philippines is entering what analysts call the “Demographic Sweet Spot” That is, instead of the majority of the population comprised of dependents, we finally now have a majority of people of working age. Of course, there’s no guarantee we’ll all have jobs. Government still has to help local and foreign investors create more. And, so we can get to work, they have to fix our insane traffic problems, which are spreading to rapidly growing urban centers like contagion.

According to PWC, Our place within the Top 20 can be achieved if for the next three decades we grow our GDP at an average annual rate of 4.5%. From 2010 to 2015, we averaged 6.1%, spiking at 7.6% and 7.1% in 2010 and 2013.

There are never any guarantees, of course. War, catastrophe, and a government that engages in systematic wholesale thievery can easily steal away what is well within our potential to reach.
We can do it if we each pull our own weight, and help lift up those who can’t. If we want to see our children and grandchildren through to a better Philippines, we cannot live as though our nation’s patrimony were ours alone to do as we wish.

So what will the book, Blueprints for 2050, be about? Visions of our country’s potential fulfilled. Plans, hopes and ideas for our progeny. Visualizations of the fruit of our faithfulness and integrity.

Who else but designers can inspire us to keep our eye on the prize? Who else can put into form what economists see in numbers and formulas? We need a visioning exercise for the country. We need to see responsible and equitable ways of developing our cities and remaining heritage districts, embodying the values that make us better human beings and Filipinos. We need blueprints for the promise of 2050.

For how to contribute to the book, click here.

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BluPrint The Philippines in 2050, A summary of the economic forecasts for the Philippines in 2050 compiled by BluPrint. It also includes some forecasts about climate change renewable energy population and some nascent technologies that will be mainstream in a decade or two from now.
HSBC The World in 2050, In January 2012 –  HSBC released the report The World in 2050 where it predicted that the Philippines would jump 27 places from 43 to the top 16th economy in the world.
PWC The World in 2050, In February 2015 – Price Waterhouse Coopers released its own version of The World in 2050. with more conservative estimates of the Philippines making it to the Top 20 in three and a half decades from now.
NEDA-The Philippine Economy Recent Performance and Long-Term Outlook1, In a workshop held for BluPrint last February 2016- economists and engineers from the National Economic Development Authority affirmed the bases for HSBC and PWC positive forecasts for the country citing GDP growth driven by investment and industry.
NEDA- The Draft National Physical Framework Plan 2016 to 2045,NEDA also supplied the draft plan of the National Spatial Strategy  which outlines which parts of the country (primarily Metro Manila Metro Cebu and Metro Davao Metro Cagayan de Oro) are targeted for development based on projected population and urbanization levels.
NEDA- Philippine Infrastructure Development Present and Future Directions,A detailed report by NEDA outlining the challenges strategies and priorities for infrastructure development in the next decade. Priorities include: Transport infrastructure development plans Water security plans flood management plans and an energy plan.

BluPrint- The Demographic Sweet Spot, A short explanation of how the country’s population profile beginning now until 2050 provides a favorable environment for accelerated economic growth.

Climate Change, A look at the long-term effects of climate change in the Philippines to see how architects should approach sustainable and disaster-resilient design in the future. How high will our sea levels rise and how extreme will our weather be by 2050?

4D Printing, A short primer on self-assembling materials-created using 4D printing technology. While the technology is still in its early stages-it presents exciting opportunities for the architecture and construction industry in the near future.

What’s in store?, A report on Filipinos’ shopping behavior and exciting technologies that turn physical retail stores into experiential and multimedia platforms for retail brands.