9 Social Trends That Will Shape The World By 2020

Macro-Trend / Social Norms.

1. More women workforce

Research shows that firms with more women in the C-Suite are 15% more profitable than those with none. Mothers will have fewer children and have them later in life. By 2020, the majority of births in North America and Europe will be to women aged over 30. This characteristic will expand the number of women in the workforce. Source: Global Entrepreneurship Monitor: 2012 Women’s Report

2. Women in charge of global consumption

Globally 85% of consumer purchases are made by women, equivalent to a spend of $20 trillion. Women already control 2/3 of the household budget in G7 countries and is expected to rise due to the narrowing down of the wage gap with men. A projected 7 million female entrepreneurs and 5 million female established business owners plan to grow their businesses by at least six employees over the next five years.

3. Workforce on the move

The millennials (born between 1980-1995) have great expectations of working internationally than their counterparts. In the last decade, the number of mobile employees increased by 25% and is expected to speed up by 50% by 2020. Whereas in the past we saw talent migrating from east to west, by 2020 we’ll see a more globally interconnected market moving in all directions and working in new ways, such as freelancing, extended business travel, virtual working and short-term assignments. By 2030 85% of population growth in the G7 countries could be only from migration, which could benefit economies but also raise political tensions.

4. Living longer, costing more

An ageing population will require more spending in healthcare. UK healthcare spending is set to rise annually by $200 billion between 2013 and 2040. The need for technology and scientific breakthroughs will become imperative, but at the same time new medical technologies could add to costs unless this demand is limited in some way.

5. Saving for pension

35 year olds in the UK need a pension pot of $666k by 65 for the same standard of living of today’s pensioners. This means they need to save 40% of their income for the next 40 years to afford retirement. Influenced by the change in demographics, the linear lifecycle education, work and employment will become disrupted. Having many people living beyond a hundred years old will require business models to change continuously. Source: PwC – Demographic and Social change

6. Rising social intimacy and directness

Gen Z will care more about the in-the-moment experiences, looking to broadcast them live on social networks to connect with same-minded people. Networks such as YouNow, Music.ly, Watch Me Work and Live.ly will gain popularity because of their ability to utilize live media to connect with other around moments. Source: Huffington Post – Changing social trends

7. Entrepreneurship is growing

Rapid-growth markets will bring many entrepreneurs to take advantage of the necessities and transform them into opportunities. Developing economies have a much higher Total Early Stage Entrepreneurial Activity Index (TEA rate) than mature ones because there is a real necessity for companies to help solving problems related to poverty and lack of wage-based employment opportunities. Source: Avoiding a lost generation: Young entrepreneurs identify five imperatives for action, EY and the G20 Young Entrepreneurs Alliance, June 2013

8. Talent from emerging countries

Recent EY World Entrepreneur Of The Year (WEOY) winners have come from India, Kenya, Singapore and China. The growing consumer power of these countries are driving the expansion of successful new businesses that offer frugal innovation, offering lower-cost products and services tailored to unmet and local market needs. Digital technologies facilitate the rapid scaling up of new businesses at lower cost and the democratization of code-writing is lowering the barrier to create an innovative venture. Source: The Bold Ones — High-Impact Entrepreneurs Who Transform Industries, World Economic Forum, September 2014.

9. Younger entrepreneurs

Because of the high number of unemployment in young people and getting more difficult to get a job, a large part of them are turning to entrepreneurship. The numbers report 13% of young people are unemployed in most G20 countries (close to 75 million people). The International Labour Organization (ILO) says this numbers reached a critical level. These young entrepreneurs need additional support to launch and scale their enterprises, including expanded range of funding alternatives, mentoring, tax incentives and a reduction in red tape. Source: Entrepreneurship Education Comes of Age on Campus, Kauffman Foundation, 2013


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