Can you imagine customising your shoes’ colour, material and heel height online and then having them printed in your local 3D print shop and delivered by drone? Kristel Van der Elst, chief executive officer and cofounder of the Global Foresight Group Sàrl, considers this a ‘plausible picture’ of shoe shopping in a few years’ time. Visible trends and emerging technologies are all around and enable us to understand how the future might look, she argues.
In the article, ‘To Innovate or Die: The Global Economy in 2050’, published in The Huffington Post, she identifies five major business implications of how radically different the global economy could become. Scale and trade in raw materials and finished goods will be less relevant. Low-cost labour might no longer be a competitive advantage for any country, while we’ll see commensurate increases of trade in data, digital templates and intellectual property.
Kristel says that it is, therefore, ‘possible to imagine that, by 2050, the capacity to innovate will have become the only source of competitive advantage – for nations, businesses and even individuals’.
Check out her full article here.