Minna Takala Trends summary 2023+

Trends and Drivers 2023+

What kind of innovation opportunities and challenges can be found in the near future 2023+ based on trends? Anticipating directions of change, I have identified four cohorts with drivers for design and concept development.

Images: created in Midjourney

TRENDS 2023+

Word of the year for 2022 was Permacrisis, described as an extended period of instability and insecurity that characterises Post-Anthropocene era. Hence, disruption has been accepted as part of normality. The challenge for 2023+ will be how to turn the spiralling crisis from destruction into recovery of circular regeneration loop.


The main theme 2022+ was Co-existence – design for both human and non-human life. It was based on the realisation of interconnectedness between systems of nature and human. Coexistence takes a systemic approach following i.e. Symbiotic thinking and ability of living together, most often for mutual benefit.

2023+ theme is Interdependence, which is evolving from Co-existence. Interdependence is a realisation that co-existance is not enough. We need a different kind of relationship with nature. Everyone depends on nature, so exploitative actions and policies must turn into the opposite – regenerative efforts to benefit both humans and planet.


STEEP analysis is a common tool that uses external factors influencing trends to predict futures. I have used three levels of change from macro and mesa to micro in order to understand their impact and spot opportunities.

STEEP (= Social, Technological, Economic, Environmental, Political)

Assess potential impacts of the issues in each STEEP category between macro (structural forces), meso (shifts in social or group behaviour) and micro (shifts in values and attitudes).

The big picture of Impact analysis in each STEEP category reveals clusters of emerging signals of change. Together with trends they form cohorts with shared characteristics.

In each cohort I have identified two main drivers of change.

The image below presents the outcome of analysis revealing four Cohorts and main Drivers of Change:

Minna Takala Trends & Drivers 2023+

takes into account systemic inequalities to ensure everyone in a community has access to the same opportunities and outcomes.


Stakeholder capitalism-> to build together holistic global systems

Decentralisation-> hyperlocality with local autonomy

Note that there are overlapping drivers resulted from Interdependence. E.g. Social Ecology, which aims to re-harmonise human communities with the natural world is driving Regeneration, and also Social Equity.

enables human and natural systems to co-exist and co-evolve. Recognising wider societal, economic and environmental impacts.


Life centred design -> takes into account planetary boundaries

Social Ecology ->to re-harmonise human communities with the natural world

means businesses will have an increasingly civic role to play


Decolonisation ->universality (e.g. human rights) and plural society

Post-consumerism -> collectiveness, cost of living crisis, wellbeing economy, quiet quitting and great cancellation

is moving towards business ecosystem level automation with minimal human intervention


Generative AI -> algorithms create new content using previously created content, such as text, audio, video, images, and code

Web3 -> internet decentralisation, blockchain technologies, and token-based economics

How to use cohorts and drivers?

Trends and drivers reveal directions of change in the near future. The key challenge is to identify most relevant areas that have biggest impacts on the business.

What kind of opportunities and challenges will appear? How certain is the future? How will the changes shape needs and behaviour habits of people?

Identifying key trend and drivers will kick start an innovation projects by giving it focus.

In my next blog, I will continue analysis towards discovering new solutions based on anticipated new needs and behaviours.


Generative AI (Artificial Intelligence) is one of the main Drivers for 2023+ in Digital Automation Cohort. I used the hugely popular ChatGPT, developed by OpenAI to describe the links between drivers of change for Social Equity, and the ChatGPT gave this description:

There is a relationship between social equity, stakeholder capitalism, and decentralization in that they all relate to the distribution of power and resources in society. Social equity and stakeholder capitalism both focus on ensuring that all members of a society have a fair and equal opportunity to participate and benefit, while decentralization aims to empower communities and individuals by giving them more control over decision-making and resources. Together, these concepts can help to create a more inclusive and equitable society.

Note that Generative AI tools give answers from existing material they scrape from internet. Therefore human curation is important. In this case the summary works well since the key words were given. Generative AI tools give relatively good top line answers to questions like what and how, but not for why. They can’t predict the future that is unknown.

There are many other serious concerns like biases, verification of sources, disinformation, noise etc. However, these AI language tools show already how the future is evolving.


I also experimented with a visual AI tool called Midjourney to design the cover images for the cohorts. Midjourney creates images from textual descriptions. Using detailed text prompts the program generates high definition digital art images very fast in dystopian, moody but beautiful style.

Midjourney Regeneration Minna Takala
Image created in Midjourney

Note that there is dispute at the moment about copyright of images created by AI programs. Another concern is the repetition and similarity of image styles due to speed of generation and scaling. The prediction is that certain styles will move on after becoming overly popular.


This is just a small example of an outcome used by following STEEP analysis method. The initial research is always including a wide selection of trends and their impact across industries.

Contact mtakalauk@gmail.com for more info about presentations and consultation.


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