José Cordeiro

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Mr. Cordeiro, 2016

José Luis Cordeiro is an economist, and futurist. He was born in Caracas, Venezuela from European parents who emigrated from Madrid during the Franco dictatorship. Educated in Europe and North America; he has studied, visited and worked in over one-hundred and thirty countries on five continents.[1]


"José studied at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, USA, where he earned his Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.) and Master of Science (M.Sc.) degrees in Mechanical Engineering, with a minor in Economics and Languages. His thesis consisted of a dynamic modeling for NASA’s Freedom Space Station (the International Space Station of today). He later studied International Economics and Comparative Politics at Georgetown University in Washington, USA, and then obtained his Masters of Business Administration (MBA) at the Institut Européen d’ Administration des Affaires (INSEAD) in Fontainebleau, France, where he majored in Finance and Globalization.

During his studies, he worked with the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) in Vienna, Austria, and with the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, USA. He started his doctoral work at MIT, which he continued later in Tokyo, Japan, and finally earned his Ph.D. at Universidad Simón Bolívar (USB) in Caracas, Venezuela. He is a lifetime member of the Sigma Xi (ΣΞ, Scientific Research) and Tau Beta Pi (ΤΒΠ, Engineering) Honor Societies in North America, is also a honorary member of the Venezuelan Engineers College (CIV), and his name has been included in the Marquis Edition of Who’s Who in the World.

- From his Biography at Lifeboat Foundation[2]

Professional career

After graduating, Cordeiro worked as a petroleum exploration engineer for Schlumberger. [citation needed] He next served as an advisor for the oil companies, including BP, ChevronTexaco, ExxonMobil, PDVSA, Pemex, Petrobras, Shell and Total. Later, in Paris, he consulted for Booz Allen Hamilton as a specialist in strategy, restructuring, and finance.[3]

Cordeiro is an international fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science (WAAS), executive director of the Ibero-American Futurists Network, director of The Millennium Project, vicechair of Humanity Plus, and former director of the Club of Rome (Venezuela Chapter), the World Transhumanist Association and the Extropy Institute. He has also been invited faculty at institutions like the Institute of Developing Economies IDE – JETRO in Tokyo, Japan, the Monterrey Institute of Technology in Mexico, Singularity University at NASA Ames in Silicon Valley, California, the Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology (MIPT) and the Higher School of Economics in Russia.

Philosophy and Politics

Cordeiro has been an advocate of sound monetary policy and dollarization in Eastern Europe and Latin America[4][5]. His 1999 book La Segunda Muerte de Sucre provided academic backing for the change from the sucre to the dollar as the currency in Ecuador, where he is regarded as one of the thought leaders of this transformation.[6]

In 2009, Cordeiro spoke at the European Futurists Conference in Lucerne about the concept of 'Singularity': "a not-too-distant moment when artificial intelligence overtakes the capabilities of the human mind - the point when we are going to merge with machines". As a teaching fellow of the Singularity University, he added that "the purpose of Singularity University is to prepare humankind for this transformation".[7]

Cordeiro coined the term 'Energularity' to refer to “the biggest change in the largest industry on our planet... the Energy industry’s shift from fossil fuels to solar, wind, geothermal or fusion”. He also coined the term "Benesuela" as a contrast to "Venezuela" in reference to the educational situation in that country.[3]

In a set of forecasts about Latin America in 2030, Cordeiro and the Millennium Project highlighted two extreme scenarios: "God is Latin American" and "Disintegration in Hell".[8]

The New York Times has quoted Cordeiro as saying "The constitutional history of Latin America is the most convulsive in the world. Constitutions seem to have become like shirts, not even suits, which rulers put on and take off at their whim."[9]

He advises audiences to “Forget flying cars and robot butlers… the future will be a far more interesting place”.[10]

Cordeiro has been writing a fortnightly opinion column in El Universal, the largest Venezuelan general newspaper, since 1996.


External links