Let’s face it. No one expected 2020. It kind of went off-road didn’t it.
But…the future is still unwritten. So while we stand at the cliff edge of this surreal year, we’re asking BACKED friends, futurists and provocateurs to share their wild predictions for the decade ahead.
Jack O’Meara | Founder & CEO @ Ochre-Bio | @Jack_O_Meara
- “The age of Distributed Science. Falling costs and miniaturisation of lab equipment will allow scientific teams to do experiments from their bedrooms. Viva La Remote Working.”
- “Precision medicine still won’t really be a thing…”
Jack’s One to Watch: BIOS are doing some cool brain interface stuff.
Pari Singh | Founder & CEO @ The Engineering Company | @parikshat7
- “We cross the point of no return on climate change, and have no alternative but to Geo-Engineer our way out of the problem. Governments kick things off, but a few billion dollar companies are built realising the commercial opportunity.”
- “Game engines outgrow video games and turn into ‘reality platforms’. They take over filmmaking, CGI, simulation and a handful of other industries, becoming one of the defining technologies of this generation.”
Pari’s One to Watch: TikTok (Byte Dance). This is already a mammoth, but the flywheel keeps spinning. My prediction is that TikTok has a larger impact on society, charities and social movements, by enabling anyone to become a celebrity. The potential downsides of this power are not to be underestimated.
Oussama Ammar | Co-Founder & Director @ The Family | @daedalium
- “VR headsets will be mainstream and will power the internet nation in the multiverse.”
- “The first prediction will make The Family rich.”
- “The return of the commune. For too long we’ve been wilfully individualistic — it’s baked into tech history, the iPhone, the iPod, focus on the user — and, in both tech and life, we are and will see far more shifts into communalism. This means; multi-generational living, more small society experiments, social places like Darius Kazemi’s Friend Camp versus monoliths like Facebook. After all, hasn’t 2020 taught us no man is an island?”
- “Privacy becomes the utmost luxury. We’re already seeing young people create multiple social profiles and set-up auto deletes; this reputational industry will continue to spiral with young people paying to be entirely “dark”.”
Sarah’s One to Watch: Movements! Black Panthers, Sunrise, XR, MeToo; as Margaret Mead would say, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
Cindy Gallop | Founder & CEO @ MakeLoveNotPorn | @cindygallop
- “Thanks to the tireless work of female #sextech founders like myself, the female lens on sex, sexuality and sexual health and wellness will drive the Social Sex Revolution and more openness and healthiness around sex worldwide.”
- “Female/Black/of Colour/LGBTQ/disabled/’other’ founders, leaders, activists and change makers everywhere will drive a more inclusive, accessible, innovative and therefore lucrative and socially beneficial world for all of us.”
Cindy’s One to Watch: Watch out for MakeLoveNotPorn — Pro-sex. Pro-porn. Pro-knowing the difference. We’re changing people’s sexual attitudes and behaviour for the better, to end rape culture and change the way the world has sex for the better — which will make us all happier and bring us all one step closer to world peace.
Gesche Haas | Founder & CEO @ Dreamers & Doers | @geschehaas
- “Breastfeeding on Zoom calls is the new normal.”
- “Many more female founder unicorns 🦄 🔥”
Naoise Dolan | Author (Exciting Times) | @NaoiseDolan
- “Governments will continue to ignore the climate emergency.”
- “Ottessa Moshfegh will write her best book yet.”
Naoise’s One to Watch: Twitter because like it or not, it is increasingly where most young people get our news.
Roxanne Varza | Director @ Station F | @roxannevarza
- “The concept of unicorns will die as we cease evaluating companies solely on financial criteria.”
- “There will be a shift of power towards emerging ecosystems.”
Roxanne’s One to Watch: Any VC that hasn’t signed a diversity pledge. They’re behind the times and not supporting progress.
Alysia Reiner | Actress (Orange is the New Black) | @alysiareiner
“What if we started to listen more? Listen to indigenous people and their wisdom to save the planet. Listen to black women who have helped save America. Listen to people we don’t agree with, and be OK with not agreeing. Listen, pause and not react. Just think about it. What if we focus on solutions not problems? As Einstein said ‘we cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.’”
Alysia’s One to Watch: AIR PROTEIN — the most brilliant solution to the future of sustainable protein
Abadesi Osunsade | Founder & CEO @ Hustle Crew | @abadesi
- “Bye bye boring admin and hello intelligent automation. Bots will do what they can do and humans won’t do what bots can do.”
- “Live streaming EVERYTHING: study sessions, writing resumes and cover letters, knitting, walking…you name it.”
Abadesi’s One to Watch: Tickr social impact investing. Capitalism is changing ….
Sonia Maciuszewicz | Head of Founder Experience @ BACKED | @smaciusz
- “The threat of antibiotic resistance starts to be recognised on par with the threat of climate change as we become unable to treat common infectious diseases.”
- “With dramatically falling fertility rates, IVF treatments will be government funded in a scramble to prevent population decline.”
Whatever happens, the future is better with friends. So share your predictions with us on Twitter @backedvc #visionsbacked
BACKED is the human-centric venture capital fund. We invest in exceptional founders, at Seed, in Europe. Put People First | Be An Apprentice | Push the Limits | Bring Good Energy. Since 2015.