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Using context brokering to map the strategic consultancy industry

There are many applications and levels that context brokering can be applied.  To provide a basic example, we’ve applied a simple network analysis to map and understand the market for strategic consultancy services (at this stage we’ve focused the mapping on the UK, but a large number of secondary, global sources have been found in the search).

To do this we designed an analysis process that took openly available data on strategic consultancies based in the UK.  Using a starting source of around 26 strategic consultancies, which we took from http://www.consultancy.uk.  We implemented a series of crawlers that would return organisations and sources connected to these source organisation websites and produced the following maps to summarise the data we found.  At this stage, we've used a fairly limited sample - we haven’t taken the searches further to specific organisations or government departments who clearly also care about strategy.  The purpose of these maps are to show the utility of mapping network data(particularly for subject matter experts) in the early stages of a plan or strategy formation.

Map 1 - A network diagram illustrating consultancies and businesses related to 'strategy'.  'Primary' relates to source web sites, 'Secondary' relates to further web sources uncovered in the crawls.

Map 1 - A network diagram illustrating consultancies and businesses related to 'strategy'.  'Primary' relates to source web sites, 'Secondary' relates to further web sources uncovered in the crawls.

In addition to the sources for strategic consultancy, we were also able to harvest email addresses for different contacts in the organisations.  Map 2 below, shows how the organisations broke down into specific email contacts.

Map 2 - Bubble map indicating which source organisations provided email contact details, gathered through crawls.

Map 2 - Bubble map indicating which source organisations provided email contact details, gathered through crawls.

How does this context add value?

Such a network analysis of open data allows us to produce a context for who cares about strategy and potentially highlights who could be interested in context brokering as a service. We’ve aimed this study specifically at the UK strategic industry to illustrate how context brokering can be applied to a sector that prizes strategic insights and one that also produces a wide range of rich data on strategy.  By mapping out who we believe the ‘players’ are - we have a good start point to work from.  We can add more sources and contact details as we find them, but also use these starting sources to gather further data and literature for further contextual analysis, such as topic modelling.

See what you think and if you have any questions about our dataset or analysis, get in touch at info@simplexity.org.uk!

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Could the Silver Economy promote healthier, more sustainable ageing? A case study using data from the Netherlands.

Around the world, people are ageing.  The phenomenon is more marked in the developed world.  In Europe and focusing on The Netherlands specifically, the average age of the population has gone from 71 in 1960, to around 81 in 2014.  This trend has been seen in many countries around the world and has led to an increasing number of policy decisions on how to better support and utilise this increasingly significant population.  For example, ‘The silver economy’ as a concept is more positive than traditional concepts of ageing, that tend to focus on the simple provision of care and support to the elderly community.  The silver economy as a concept, focuses on how economically significant the +65 age group can be.  Could the significance of 'silvers' in the future lead to a change in how we treat and support people as they age?  Could policies and attitudes to ageing become more nuanced and lead to increasingly diverse ways in which this group can contribute and support local and national economies?

To help understand the Silver economy better and the opportunities and challenges it could present in the future, we analysed some of the current research around the concept - specifically in the Netherlands.  This gave us a clearer idea of what trends and insights currently surround the silver economy and ageing in general.  The analysis also allowed us to produce a ‘topic map’ that summarised these trends as well as low frequency ‘outlier’ trends and insights of general interest to the silver economy and ageing (for the method on how this was conducted please see - The silver economy in Holland a data driven Horizon scan).

As the topic map above illustrates, despite the positive opportunity the Silver Economy represents, the data gathered in this analysis suggests that a lot of the current data and research mostly focuses on the current constraints, costs and concerns around ageing in general.  To understand this further, we’ve broken each theme down into specific narratives based on the data collected (using the most frequently occurring keyword themes as a means of prioritising them).

  1. Care

Society will see continued demand for care for ageing populations.  With an ageing population there will be considerable demand around how and where care is provided.  What constitutes ‘care’ can be quite varied for an ageing society, social support and welfare provision will continue to be important for the ‘early aged’ (the silvers in the 65-75 age range) but becoming more chronic and concerned with the provision of long-term-care and geriatric medicine for the ‘older aged’ (+75 years).  

There will continue to be considerable speculation around how care is provided to ageing communities.  In addition to the type of care, there is considerable discussion around different processes of care delivery.  For example, across Europe there are very different models for how and where care for ageing people is delivered.  In many countries, there are models of ‘familism’ in which individuals provide direct care for their ageing parents and relatives by often having them live in their own homes together (as is the case in countries like Spain and Italy). Other countries like the UK and Holland, tend to base care on state-based models, with ageing individuals more likely to have to fund (with or without state-support) their own care requirements, which are provided by state, or state-subsidised care workers.  Across the developed world there are many different variations mostly between these two sources of funding for care - a continuum of care between the individual and the state.

Deductions for the silver economy.  Ageing is a complex process.  As a person ages their care needs will change and diversify as people go from ‘younger’ old age, to advanced ages.  At present, many nation states, including Holland, use well established social care and pension models to address these costs.  How resilient are these models for the future?  How could they be improved to reflect the increasing health and longevity of people post retirement age (65+)?  Could the silver economy represent a new employment sector for adults in traditional retirement age?  Could such communities be better incentivised and empowered to organise care systems more efficiently and in more beneficial ways than state-controlled systems that treat all members of the 65+ community with a dated, one-size fits all policy?

2.  Health

Health care needs will continue to diversify for an ageing economy.  As our knowledge of medicine and technical solutions to health care problems become increasingly sophisticated, the health care needs of ageing populations are continuing to diversify.  This trend does increase the health and well-being of the average person, as lifestyles become generally healthier and care continues to improve (as reflected in increasing life expectancies).  This also creates questions around how people can age more healthily; for example, could such a trend enable people to grow old in manners that see all of the many different components of their health addressed? As well as the clinical and functional needs of health, can the increasingly important issues of social care and mental health (especially loneliness and isolation in ageing communities) be more specifically addressed?  Additionally, how will issues such as dementia (projected to continue to dominate health care provision) and other chronic diseases be addressed over time to help promote healthier ageing?

There will be considerable demand to address the health care costs of ageing in the future.  As people continue to live longer lives, the demands to access health care will continue to grow as more treatments are available and people requirement them for longer periods of time. Technology will represent a potential response to address some of these costs, for example, loneliness (a common concern for many ageing communities) can be addressed more rapidly today and in the future using community based initiatives and increasingly accessible ICT technology.  Additionally, smarter, age-friendly homes can improve how people are supervised for care, potentially making support and care provision in later life easier and more cost effective.  However, as scientific and technological knowledge advance, the need and desire for ‘solutions’ to the ‘problems’ of ageing will also increase.  Such demand is more likely to increase the overall cost of ageing, with insurance, individuals and that state often being the main sources of finance to provide them.

Deductions for the silver economy.  In the Netherlands, and many other European countries, health trends will continue to have significant impact on ageing.  In one sense people are likely to be healthier for longer and lead more active, independent lives.  This could lead to significant empowerment of ‘silvers’, who could remain economically significant greater and greater ages and, again, could represent a significant driver for the silver economy.  In rethinking how silvers contribute their both their economic influence, but also greater available time made possible through retirement schemes based around the 65+ age range, could the young older age represent an important sector for care and organisation of elder care (+75 age ranges)?  Such considerations could be important especially for countries like Holland because, as health care demands and access become increasingly diverse and complex, the financial burden imposed on the state to provide current levels of care could be highly significant for the future.

3. Service Provision

Do current services meet the needs of an ageing society?  Within the data there is a general reflection that the requirement to support an increasingly ageing society represents a future challenge on current infrastructure and services.  People are living longer, but social and health care models are not, generally, changing to reflect this.  At the global level, this is seen as a considerable discussion surrounding who should provide care - is it the state, is it the individual or their families?  At the national level (in countries like the Netherlands and the UK) debates often centre on how these services are provided, generally with the state being on one end of a spectrum and private health insurance becoming increasingly significant at the other with family care and volunteer services somewhere between these two options.   In such debates, there are often long-held cultural assumptions that the state or the individual ‘should’ provide care.  Due to the polarity of such beliefs and a lack of clarity of who should be providing care, there can often be significant gaps that older individuals can fall through when questions of ‘who should be providing care’ are not addressed.  In some countries, the state picks up the burden, in others the vulnerable, and the aged who require the most support can sometimes be left with nothing.  Is this the best way?

How could models of service provision change?  Currently, a high level of care in many countries is provided by either cheap, unskilled labour (often fulfilled by migrant workers) or volunteers and family members. Family support as a model of social care could change in the future should traditions around shared generational housing (and the general cost of housing) change, additionally, as family size decreases (a generally accepted trend of development) and general costs of living and housing rise, will future generations be less disposed to the direct provision of family care?  As well as family, a considerable proportion of unskilled care provision is often undertaken by migrant workers.  How does this impact on future service provision, if political isolationism (seen in policies such as Brexit, or current US policies on immigration) means that migrant workers are less supported in a developed country? A significant proportion of the labour required to deliver care services to the silver economy could be reduced.   Additionally, in some countries (especially those with poor national economies) there is currently a considerable shortage of skilled and unskilled paid healthcare providers as they seek better employment opportunities abroad.

Deductions for the silver economy.  A more nuanced awareness of ageing and the benefits initiatives like the silver economy could provide represent a significant opportunity for service provision, for both ageing individuals and the state.  At present, it is often the informal, volunteer and charity sectors that addresses many of the gaps in welfare provision for the ageing society, perhaps reflecting the significant differences in care models from the state and the individual.  Could the silver economy represent a way of organising the informal provision of care for greater benefit to the individuals and local economy?  For example, could the contribution of the newly retired (who often contribute to the volunteer sector for elder care) represent an important demographic for the organisation, management and delivery of many aspects of care to the older aged - especially for social support?

Image from   http://www.silvereco.eu/

Image from http://www.silvereco.eu/

4. Ageing

People will continue to age, but perhaps more healthily.  As scientific advances continue to drive longevity and health improvements and as society becomes more educated on healthy behaviours it is likely that people will continue to ‘age well’.  As a result the average age of the population is likely to continue to increase in the developed world and life expectancy is likely to continue to rise.  Male life expectancy is likely to improve, with men living on average, slightly longer, although women are still likely to live longer in the future.  This is mostly driven by changes in behaviour and an increasing awareness of how to stay healthy.  However, as society progresses, the issues of ageing - such as dependency and frailty will become increasingly important to address to keep people fully healthy for as long as possible. Additionally, the psychological impacts of ageing will become as important as the physiological ones, with issues such as loneliness and mental health becoming increasingly important to address.

Deductions for the silver economy - addressing frailty and reducing dependency could be significant ways in which the silver economy could help address some of the current challenges and costs of the ageing process.  Addressing how frailty arises in older people could have a significant impact on the health and quality of later life and potentially reduce the level of unnecessary hospitalisation and institutional care.  This, in turn, can help reduce dependency on the state for the continued provision of care but, more importantly, help improve the quality of life as people move into advanced ages.  Could the resources and skills of the generations that constitute the silver economy enable a fresh look and a new approach for care provision that provides both more sustainable care models but also a healthier ageing process?

5. Pensions

Retirement age is likely to increase in the future.  People are likely to live for longer, as a result it is likely that most countries will need to increase the age of retirement.  How countries do this will see considerable variation, many will increase the age of state pensions and retirement through a gradual process that reflects the gradual increase of average age in the population.  However, change is not likely to occur at a pace that reflect this distribution of economically productive populations and the continued perception that the young are working to pay for the retirement of their elders.  This is a challenging perception, often driven by demographics, for example, in the Netherlands ‘baby boomers’ account for 28% of the national population and middle aged groups (those between 35-44) account for 12%.  As a result, is it likely that less people will be working more to sustain those older than them in progressively longer periods of retirement.  Does this represent a significant argument for more nuanced plans and policies surrounding retirement?  How could this relate to pension schemes in the future?

Deductions for the silver economy - could the silver economy represent a new way of thinking about retirement and pension provision?  How many people currently retired devote a significant proportion of their time and resources to volunteer services to help people older than themselves?  Is it possible that the silver economy could represent a new form of employment for the newly retired and younger generations alike in a combined generational effort to build better economies around the realities of care provision to an ageing society?

6. Data

There are considerable differences in how different countries address ageing.  At present it is clear that there are considerable differences at the state level in how different countries provide pensions and services for ageing populations.  To improve and provide better forms of sustainable care, a comparison of different national systems could illustrate how different models, from volunteer to family care, through to fully state-based care are provided.  Such research could allow a better understanding of how to adapt current policies to better and more economically reflect the needs of increasingly ageing human populations.

What data exists on ‘silvers’?  The notion of the silver economy relies on people living longer and healthier lives and the assumption that many of these people would either want to give up their retirement years to continue to work and/or continue to have significant economic influence?  Is this this case?  How real and influential is the silver demographic?

As a 70 year Billionaire could Donald Trump be the champion of the Silver Economy? Image from   https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2017/01/15/the-senate-intelligence-investigation-must-tell-us-if-trumps-team-conspired-with-russia/?utm_term=.e50e3ba74b34

As a 70 year Billionaire could Donald Trump be the champion of the Silver Economy? Image from https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/right-turn/wp/2017/01/15/the-senate-intelligence-investigation-must-tell-us-if-trumps-team-conspired-with-russia/?utm_term=.e50e3ba74b34

Implications for the silver economy - presently the silver economy is an idea.  Its potentially enticing on a lot of levels.  At a basic economic level, silvers represent a significant source of spending power and an increasingly significant market.  In more abstract, policy terms, such economic potential could help address the increasing costs of ageing but also help provide greater employment opportunities for people longer into their lives.  But, is this the case?  Do newly retired people want to continue work, do they want greater employment opportunities or have they not worked enough?  Additionally, how many of this demographic actually do contribute to informal care and the volunteer sector - data on informal care is limited and often hard to collect.  To understand what the silver economy could be and how it could benefit society generally, more data is required to understand, how and if it can be applied.

Final thoughts on the silver economy

The silver economy as a concept seems to present a variety of different opportunities and challenges. Its promise is enticing and could reflect how ‘silvers’ have benefited from more consistent economic conditions that have limited other younger generations.  Could the economic and political influence of silvers change how we think about social care in the future, leading to more nuanced ways of responding to the increasingly complex demands of ageing? 

However, when thinking about the silver economy and how it could help drive more sustainable ageing, it’s worth remembering that a number of assumptions have been made surrounding how and who delivers such care in current systems.  At present, care for ageing populations tends to be delivered through a range of different providers - from informal family care (generally provided by women), the state (often underpinned by migrant workers) and volunteers (often themselves of retirement age).  The silver economy could represent a useful policy initiative to help co-ordinate and better resources such informal and formal systems. However, to avoid such a policy being overly aspirational and out-of-touch with the community it is seeking to support more data is required to understand how such a policy of empowerment could help people ageing.  

A recent example of a similar policy is the ‘Big Society’ that was implemented in the UK without the full research into how and who it could benefit.  This policy was based on the assumption that people would volunteer to fulfil the need for a wide variety of service providers without understanding the scale required to do this, could the silver economy suffer from such similar assumptions?  

As a concept the silver economy is enticing, but what is the appetite amongst the newly retired and how would it be delivered to address and support the current service providers, and most importantly, the elderly (and silvers) alike?

This research was delivered to inform an event in December 2016 organised by Future Consult for the Dutch Rijkswaterstaat that helped understand early warning signals for the silver economy in Holland.

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The Silver Economy in Holland - an example of a data driven Horizon scan.

The ‘silver economy’ is a term used to describe how the increasingly healthy and demographically significant +65 population could be of greater economic significance in the future.  Thinking about the silver economy could highlight considerable economic benefits and many governments and businesses are thinking about how to better engage with this increasingly significant demographic.  Working with our associates at Future Consult we did some analysis to help the Dutch Rijkswaterstaat better understand what the implications of an increasingly significant silver economy could be for Holland.

To do this we applied a form of topic modelling and expert mapping, that is sometimes referred to as ‘Context brokering’ today.  This post covers how this analysis was conducted, in a separate blog we’ve detailed the key findings from the analysis and the subsequent discussions it was used to facilitate.

Using context brokering to understand strategic trends.

To understand the silver economy and the benefits it could bring there is a considerable wealth of knowledge available around ageing generally.  Ageing and the silver economy relate to research in the fields of demographics, society, health, the economy and even as far as resources and infrastructure, so they are very complex, multi-disciplinary areas of study.  To conduct any analysis on this subject, we thought it best to reflect such complexity and design a basic data gathering method that bought in data from a wide variety of open sources reflecting the different sources of data.  So we based the way of gathering the data on the following process:

Doing this, we defined an initial search that returned 18 open reports detailing the silver economy, society, ageing and limited the geographical range to Holland, or Europe more generally.  After gathering this data as reports we then applied machine reading techniques to extract the most significant keywords for the combined string set of all the documents, doing so allowed us to sample the most frequently occurring key terms:

This data was then analysed further to look at the interconnections between the key terms and, a further level of analysis was conducted to ‘tag’ further terms and specific trends and ideas with the intention of labelling and discovering any interesting ‘outliers’ or signals for new and novel ideas for trends.

Doing this analysis allowed us to start to resolve the complex issue that the silver economy represents into a series of different topics, from the most discussed topics to the least.  This kind of information analysis (albeit from a small dataset) enabled us to generate a simple, ‘topic map’ to inform and guide further facilitated discussions with representatives from across the Dutch Government, Academia and Industry.  This approach, provided a clear context to start discussions around initial assumptions in real data and provides the earliest start point for evidence-based decision making.  The full dataset for the analysis is available here and the ‘rich picture’ produced using Gephi is available here.  For those wishing to engage with a dynamic data visualisation that illustrates trends and interconnections in the master data set, this is all provided in the gephi, rich-picture visualisation to access this data, please contact the team at info@simplexity.org.uk.  For those interested in the ‘top level’ strategic narrative around the data, please see the image below and the discussion of the specific trends and themes (and overall feedback on the technique) is available at the following blog post - The Silver Economy in Holland.

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Using short story competitions to predict the future.

The Economic and Social Research Council has just announced the winners of its 'World in 2065' writing competition, and very good they are too.  The winning entry, by James Fletcher is called 'City Inc' and is a future vignette about the rise of the City State.  Other entries from Josephine Go Jeffries and Gioia Barnbrook, both explored themes relating to climate change and how they could impact on the future. 

Looking through these great entries, it does make you think about all the other submissions.  By necessity for short story competitions you do have to have a winner, that's how these things go.  But, if you think about it, the reason we commission creative exercises about the future is about getting ideas.  So, if you run a competition what happens to all the ideas and insights contained in the entries that didn't make it to the short list?

Now, generally there could be a good reason that stories didn't make it to the short list.  Probably, they were difficult to read, possibly they were incredulous or maybe they weren't entertaining enough.  The reasons they didn't make the cut will be defined by the selection parameters of the judging panel, in this case, a high profile one (including Tash Reith-Banks from the Guardian) really knows its stuff artistically.

But, I can't help reflecting on how short story competitions could be best used to gather ideas about the future.  We know that they don't really provide a more accurate view about what could happen, so what value to they have?

The value of ideas from short stories.

The real value from short story competitions comes in the ideas and possibilities they raise.  This is where they are so valuable and its so important for them to be creatively unconstrained and really highlight as wide a range of ideas as possible.

Unfortunately, this is where the traditional means of assessing competition entries fall down a little, as they only select and take forward a small proportion of the entries for further exploration.  It means all the ideas contained in the entries that don't make the shortlist aren't used.

As a futures analyst, I feel this is a shame as it wastes ideas.  But, I do understand, that for a competition, you do need to have a winner, and choosing an entry based on its artistic merit is a good way to go.  However, there is an alternative...

Data mining competition entries

In this data-led age its now possible to rethink how we run competitions.  So, as well as choosing an overall winner, you can also filter the ideas contained in all the entries, this will give futures analysts what they want - i.e. a broad a range of ideas about the future as possible.  Then when you take these ideas and map them, you get a real understanding of the bulk of what people are thinking when they write their entries.  For example, take the following map.

Sample Map from the Scan of Scans.

Sample Map from the Scan of Scans.

This data visualisation is based on the content of around 300 foresight reports and summarizes that most frequently occurring terms.

Now, if you take this approach with all of your competition entries - you then have an additional source of ideas and material.  Which for a futures analyst is highly desirable as any one of these could be a potential lead on a trend in the future...

Unfortunately, at present most competitions aren't designed with getting this added value from its entries, however, perhaps as we become used to being more data-driven this could change in the future.

And, for those sci-fi short story aficionados out there - the data driven approach in journalism, was actually predicted by Paolo Bacigalupi in his short story called 'The Gambler' - in this media agencies track the most popular stories using a live data visualisation called the 'Maelstrom', a brilliant name for a living, evolving complex mess.  And its such things that can be a little daunting to work through.  But for the first time we have the tools and the know-how.  It would be great to start using them to get more value from short story competitions...

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A data-driven forecast for the future of healthcare.

Back in November 2014, we produced a forecast that was entirely data derived. Unlike a lot of futures reports, this analysis is based entirely on openly available data and analysed and visualised in a manner that illustrates all of the available data used to derive judgements. We believe this is important as it means we can reduce bias in our assessments but also when we make predictions for the future we can produce quantified assessments to reflect our belief in whether they will happen or not.  We've now developed this analysis significantly and have used it to test ideas and trends in a wide variety of areas, but, if you're interested in the future of health, we've now made the analysis available here.

But, for those of you, too busy to read the actual report, the main 'Top 5' findings are detailed below [caveated appropriately!]

Top 5 trends in Healthcare 2015 - 2050.

1. Fee paying healthcare is likely to increase out to 2050.

Insight - Because of greater demand on health systems (ageing, obesity and disease), the rise of new healthcare markets and strategies (from emerging markets) and increasing technologies and medications to promote and prolong life, fully funded state-based healthcare is unlikely to be sustainable out to 2050.

Judgement - There is a probability of 0.8 that by 2050, countries like the UK will deliver a far greater proportion of their healthcare through private agencies. State-based provision is likely to become increasingly difficult because of the continued evolution of diverse healthcare demands and increasingly complex technical requirements of future treatments. By such a point, states are likely to focus on facilitating access to affordable healthcare and promoting healthier lifestyles.

2. Global obesity rates are likely to increase over the next 30 years, prompting significant initiatives to address them.

Insight - Without coordinated intervention global obesity rates are likely to increase out to 2050. Basic projections suggest that if global obesity continues at its current level, an estimated 2 billion people in a global population of 7 billion in 2013 (contrasting with 857 million from a global population of 4.5 billion in 1980), then by 2050, around 30-60% of the global population will be obese. In total numbers, if the global population reaches 9.5 billion by 2050, this will represent a range of 2.7-5.7 billion obese people.

Judgement - There is a 0.95 probability that the levels of obesity in the global population will increase from 2014-2050. This trend will be driven by higher calorie diets as lower activity levels become the global norm. However, the problem may become so significant, so quickly, that policy reforms, new technologies and medicines may provide the necessary interventions to mitigate this trend.

3. Out to 2050, states are more likely to occupy the role of facilitating healthcare access as opposed to direct provision.

Insight - Over the next 30 years, the rising cost of healthcare and the increasing diversity of technologies and medicines to promote health and prolong life will mean state-based care strategies will be increasingly costly to maintain. This is likely to lead to many countries developing less costly models to promote and facilitate access to healthcare, guaranteeing a level of access to the least well off citizens alone, whilst enabling access (through part funded and tax incentive schemes) to the majority of their citizens. However, due to the variability of national strategies and priorities, there will be considerable variation in the political attitude to toward state-based healthcare.

Judgment - There is a 0.65 Probability that governments will move to roles based on facilitating access to healthcare as opposed to being the direct provider.

 

4. The use of healthcare data will be increasingly important for healthcare treatments.

Insight - Out to 2050, improvements in sensor technology, data collection and increasingly available open data will drive metric collection and increasingly sophisticated trials and health strategies. Such developments will change many perceptions on the use/protection of health information and patient confidentiality.

Judgment - The use of healthcare data will increase out to 2050. It is a certainty that data (once it has been approved for confidentiality and legal consideration) will be collected and used to improve the quality of human healthcare.

5. Policies to encourage healthy behaviours and lifestyles are likely to become increasingly important.

Insight - To reduce long term health issues government and company policies are increasingly likely to promote healthy behaviors and lifestyles to reduce long term costs on industry and the state. Such strategies will be more cost effective to implement in the long term and reduce the treatment of symptoms rather than the causes. However, certain specific requirements such as the guarantee of basic security and emergency responses to save lives will remain key ‘duties of care’ that will need to be maintained.

Judgment - There is a 0.7 Probability that policies to encourage healthy behaviors will increase over the next 30 years.

Judgment - There is a 0.95 Probability that the duty of care of governments to maintain and protect the health and safety of their citizens will endure out to 2050.

Outliers

As well as weighting our top five findings we've also collected some 'outliers'. These are the rare, and very low reported trends. When you get all these together they can make for interesting reading, just think, if we'd done this exercise in 2009 - where would the term 'healthcare metrics' appeared?

9 'Outlier' trends for the future of Health

1. The next pandemic may not be flu.

2. Both Japan and the EU may suffer from a shortage of trained healthcare providers in the future.

3. Long term chronic illness (such as diabetes or forms of cancer) could represent significant healthcare issues in the future.

4. Hypertension could be an increasingly significant healthcare issue.

5. The rise of counterfeit medicines and synthetic narcotics could be of potential significance to the future of human health and the pharmaceutical industry.

6. The increased use and sophistication of biomarkers could be significant for addressing future health challenges.

7. Cognitive systems that sense, act, think, feel, communicate and evolve, could be increasingly important in how we understand and improve the healthcare solutions at our disposal.

8. ‘Localisation’ and the local environment could be increasingly significant for how healthcare options are delivered to the surrounding populace.

9. A revolution in farming and agriculture could improve or alter health dynamics anywhere around the world.

Any questions?  Get in touch, at info@simplexity.org.uk

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