Shopping centers are too entrenched in local communities and their economies for them to ever be completely displaced, argued outgoing ICSC Chairman William Taubman and COO of Taubman Centers, at RECon 2011. "I believe that the regional shopping center, with the jobs, services, consumer choices and public revenue that it provides, is a powerful force for societal good around the world," he said. "We need to continue to make our centers the social center of the communities." For that reason, he doesn't see the growth of e-commerce and mobile commerce to be a threat to bricks-and-mortar stores.
"Real stores will remain the dominant shopping venue, especially for the fashion industry, there's no substitute for the social experience of shopping."