Australia Trend Briefing 2018 : Sydney

Our highly subscribed live events draw on The Future Laboratory’s wealth of research to inspire and reframe future business strategy. In February 2018 in Sydney we will present the macrotrends set to affect consumer spending and business futures over the next 5–10 years.

To book or for more information please visit :

DATE : 7 February

LOCATION : Carriageworks, 245 Wilson Street, Eveleigh, NSW 2015.

Innovator : $800 until 10 October 2017
Early Adopter : $1000 until 14 November 2017
Late Adopter : $1200 thereafter


From the political to the personal, the old world order has broken down. But beyond the evident dislocation, fragmentation and division, new systems are evolving. 

Driven by fresh attitudes, ethics and unprecedented circumstances, the future looks very different from what has gone before.

Join us to gain a deeper understanding of the key trends that are set to transform the business landscape and gain an invaluable strategic toolkit. 


In an afternoon of thought-provoking visual and verbal presentations, our editorial, strategy and innovation teams will examine the latest trends: 

1.00pm – Registration

2.00pm – Introduction and Event Overview

2.15pm – Civic Brands

 The tension between urban liberal and hinterland Just Nots’ attitudes has fractured society, and the gulf between city
states and nation states continues to widen. But thinking brands, businesses and organizations are stepping in where governments are failing, and acting as forces for good in society. Amid this shift from top-down corporate hegemony to truly equitable peer-to-peer networks and post-ownership models, brands will need to act as educators and enablers, and provide tools for a decentralized economy in which people still need guidance, direction and sustainable, long-term solutions. This trend will explore questions such as: 

:  How can brands help to restore the position of the city as a crucible of enlightenment, leadership and protection? 

:  What role can brands play in re-introducing law, order and security into an increasingly volatile landscape? 

:  How can public-private partnerships help to bridge the gap between the haves and the have nots, and help facilitate a reconciliation process across society? 

:  Can brands return to a time when they acted more like mayors than crooks? 

:  Is it time for brands to take on Renaissance roles and become benefactors rather than resource-drainers? 

3.00pm – Afternoon break

3.30pm – The Focus Filter

Attention has become a scarce resource in an age when consumers are continually bombarded with information. Brands locked in competition measure fleeting moments of consumer attention in terms of clicks, views and follows, but have lost the ability to remain focused. We explore how to apply a Focus Filter to your communications strategies, cultivate deep engagement that lasts, and a way out
of the ‘he who shouts loudest wins all’ trap into which many of us have fallen – and more worryingly – readily believe. 

This trend will tackle questions such as: 

:  What would a Focus Filter that brands can apply to their communications strategies look like? 

:  In the age of Trump how do we prevent those who shout loudest – and tell the truth the least – from becoming the dominant voice of reason? 

: With the amount of information continually battling for our attention, how can we help consumers and our brands to regain focus and uplift relevance? 

: Can automation help us to focus on the things that matter?

 : How will long-form storytelling re-engage people in new narratives?

: Is it fruitful to have a three-second ad, and if not, how does a brand approach its communications channels when more consumers than ever are keen to hear their own voices rather than those of others? 

4.15pm – Neo-kinship

The nuclear family is a thing of the past and the notion of a core social unit is changing. Online relationships and increasingly sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) systems are contributing to our emotional, social and economic wellbeing. But what will happen to intimacy, trust and privacy in this new world order in which children grow up in virtual reality (VR) worlds, augmented reality (AR) environments and a social media mindscape in which the rule books are rewritten on the basis of every change? In this shifting, quick economy, how can we make current and new-style families and kinship groups more prepared and ready for the seismic changes ahead? This trend will examine questions such as: 

:  What is the changing role of kinship in an age of digital connection and automation? 

:  How should we understand familial roles and ties in this environment? 

:  Can we introduce the role of wise brand parents to help guide and nurture these new family non-units of the future? 

:  What happens to core familial values such as trust and security in this age of loose-tie and digital-tie formats? 

:  Can our digital relationships ever reach the same level of intimacy as our physical ones? 

5.00pm – Innovation Toolkit

The Future Laboratory’s Innovation team examine how the trends covered during the afternoon are set to affect brands, businesses and global corporations for the coming year – in terms of brand direction, consumer requirements and product innovation. 

5.30pm – Drinks & Networking

6.30pm – Ends

For more information please contact Jen Sherrin at 

or +61 438 220 243

Image credits:

1. Dyson Research and Development centre

2. Mirror Maze by Es Devlin, The Fifth Sense by Chane

3. Anxy magazine campaign. Photography by Michelle Le