Wow! Geoff Lawton, thanks for the reply. I was hoping for more details, but this reply is interesting and hopeful.
My rough math is once 600 million* people know about the word permaculture we may have reached the tipping point.**
Let's think of it as story writing. We wake up tomorrow and permaculture is a household word. Remember it is only 600 million people that need to be reached. How did we get there?
In terms of reaching people, I am guessing that the 100 million people in wheaton eco scale 2 (where 30% of purchased food is organic) is a great place to start. They might not have heard of permaculture but have already made a conscious effort to buy less toxic stuff and may be receptive an even better idea.... permaculture, baby!
I suppose getting permaculture to become a household word is simply to spread it through conversation, literature, and the internet.
In the case of most people I'm guessing this is limited to talking to those around us about it. Talking to friends, family, and even the random stranger (if you're so bold) can easily spread the idea around. I certainly do plenty of that, I talk off the ear of anyone who will listen about my interest in sustainable living/agriculture practices, especially permaculture and since doing so I have found quite a few people interested in learning more who will probably spread the term further.
Those of us who have blogs, write for papers, or are involved in other forms of print could write articles.
Social networking sites are a great way to get information around. I post articles I stumble across all the time. I doubt many people share my interest and few probably pay attention but a few do and that's a start.
Implementing permaculture practices in public venues is another possibility. A friend of mine did public garden design for the city using permaculture principles. Starting local community gardens like this is another possibility.
Just a few thoughts, dunno if it's what you're looking for but I hope it helps
"And forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet and the winds long to play with your hair."