Outlook 2020 – Predictions for 2020 and the Next Decade

2020 Predictions

Outlook 2020 – Predictions for the Next Decade – Contents

  • Is 2020 a Special Year?
  • Climate Change
  • Technology
  • Disruption
  • Trust
  • Health
  • AI
  • Trade Wars
  • 7 Shocking Predictions for 2020 and Beyond
  • Top Predictions for 2020
  • Global Economic Outlook 2020: A Break in the Clouds

Is 2020 a Special Year?

  • 2020 (MMXX) will be a leap year starting on Wednesday, 1st January 2020.
  • A leap year starting on Wednesday is any year with 366 days and includes 29 February 2020.
  • 2020 contains two Friday the 13ths in March and November.
  • 2020 is the 20th year of the 3rd millennium, the 20th year of the 21st century, and the 1st year of the 2020s decade.
  • Key Planned Events:
    • The planned launch of NASA’s Mars 2020 Mission
    • ESA’s ExoMars Rover launches from Earth.
    • Launch of NASA’s Artemis 1 mission to the Moon to test the Space Launch System rocket.
    • The 2020 Summer Olympics will be held in Tokyo, Japan.
    • The 2020 World Expo will open in Dubai.
    • United States presidential election.
    • The United Kingdom’s membership of the European Union will be decided.
    • Solar Eclipse – December 14.

“You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”

– C.S. Lewis

Climate Change Predictions – 2020

“Climate models predict that Earth’s global average temperate will rise in the future. For the next two decades warming of about 0.2° Celsius is projected. Climate change is predicted to impact regions differently.” – UCAR Center for Science Education (UCAR SciEd)

“Even as Earth is buffeted by superstorms, droughts and flooding made worse by rising seas, and as greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise globally, an analysis by the World Resources Institute showed that current efforts to limit temperature increases are falling well short.” – https://phys.org

“By 2050, many U.S. cities will have weather like they’ve never seen. New York, San Francisco, and Washington are among the 17 U.S. cities that will soon face unprecedented weather.” – National Geographic, 10th July 2019

“Rising seas could affect three times more people by 2050 than previously thought, according to new research, threatening to all but erase some of the world’s great coastal cities.” – Denise Lu and Christopher Flavelle, The New York Times, Oct. 29, 2019

“Global warming” refers to the long-term warming of the planet. “Climate change” encompasses global warming, but refers to the broader range of changes that are happening to our planet, including rising sea levels; shrinking mountain glaciers; accelerating ice melt in Greenland, Antarctica, and the Arctic; and shifts in flower/plant blooming times.” – NASA Global Climate Change

“Climate change also poses a significant challenge to our customers, our business and the insurance sector more broadly, and so that’s necessitated a really serious look at how we manage climate-related risks and opportunities.” – Pat Regan, CEO QBE, Australia

“Climate change is an issue facing all businesses and we recognize that airlines have a responsibility to cut emissions.” – Alan Joyce, Qantas, Australia

“January to March 2020 daytime temperatures are very likely to be above average across Australia.” – Bureau of Meteorology, Australia

“Research has shown that most of the changes observed over recent decades will continue into the future. Projections suggest that for Australia:
– hot days will become more frequent and hotter (very high confidence)
– sea levels will rise (very high confidence)
– oceans will become more acidic (very high confidence)
– snow depths will decline (very high confidence)
– extreme rainfall events will become more intense (high confidence)” – CSIRO, Australia


“Rising seas could affect three times more people by 2050 than previously thought, according to new research, threatening to all but erase some of the world’s great coastal cities.”

– The New York Times

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Technology Predictions – 2020

“5G, IoT integration and the associated ability to connect distributed and diverse data sources into a ‘systems of intelligence’ will drive huge AI opportunities in consumer and content management, network optimization and integration of an exploding number of sensor-based data sources.” – Gil Press, Forbes

“The tempo of change and adoption is increasing, fueled by the democratization of innovation as technologies such as cloud computing give smaller companies greater access to new technologies. While the scale and use of some of these technologies are some way into the future, the rate of change we’re experiencing means that the future is not as far off as we may think.” – NTT Disruptive Technologies: 2020 technology trends

“Enterprises need to balance the control of these devices in their enterprises while also enabling users to use them for the benefit of the organization. This means embracing and exploiting the benefits of physical human augmentation through the implementation of a BYOE (Bring Your Own Enhancement) strategy,” – Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

“IoT is changing at scale. We’re seeing audiovisual technologies being used to get the same input you’d receive from wiring up numerous IoT sensors. Audio analysis can identify the sound of breaking glass, for example, to trigger an alert. High-definition video allows for object processing, isolating and creating pattern libraries, and using pattern matching to monitor real-time events. Compared with individual sensors, these technologies provide feasible mass coverage at a lower cost.” – NTT Disruptive Technologies: 2020 technology trends

“Industrial robots will become more persuasive as they will become significantly easier to program. As robotic automation expands into new industrial areas like logistics and electronic assembly, this will be essential to facilitate widespread adoption. The shift from script-based programming to graphical-based programming will be the catalyst behind this.” – Chris Harlow, Realtime Robotics

“There is a tidal wave of technology innovation coming over the horizon right now and the level of disruption will only grow. No single technology is driving this, it is the convergence of a number of breakthrough technologies, including cloud, AI, edge computing, and 5G.” – Andy Penn, Telstra, Australia

“As attack vectors become more sophisticated and infrastructure more complex, hacking is just about inevitable – which is why a response is such a critical area of cybersecurity. Security Orchestration, Automation, and Response (SOAR) will be the hottest area in cybersecurity in the year ahead, as this is how we will build trust across infrastructure and applications. Algorithms will help machines to recognize patterns across applications and infrastructure, identify anomalies in those patterns that point to potential attacks, and orchestrate security controls automatically – and instantaneously ­– without a human touch.” – NTT Intelligent Cybersecurity: 2020

“Changes to the way data is used, shared, validated and secured, including via blockchain, big data, artificial intelligence, and machine learning.”- Dominic Stevens, ASX Limited, Australia


We’re seeing audiovisual technologies being used to get the same input you’d receive from wiring up numerous IoT sensors. Audio analysis can identify the sound of breaking glass, for example, to trigger an alert. High-definition video allows for object processing, isolating and creating pattern libraries, and using pattern matching to monitor real-time events. Compared with individual sensors, these technologies provide feasible mass coverage at a lower cost.”

– NTT

Disruption Predictions – 2020

“Companies looking to capitalize on IoT will become IoT service businesses. Operations dependent on one-time product sales will become obsolete as business value moves from products to the experiences they enable. This transformation will fundamentally change how businesses operate, interact with customers and make money. Those who recognize that the internet of things isn’t about things but about service will be positioned to meet these new customer demands, unlock new sources of revenue and thrive in this connected world.” – Jahangir Mohammed, CEO of Jasper Technologies, Inc

“Applications used to define our jobs. Nowadays, we are seeing organizations designing application experiences around the employee. For example, mobile and cloud technologies are freeing many workers from coming into an office and instead of supporting a ‘work anywhere’ environment, outpacing traditional application business models,” – Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

“Over the next several years, new lower-cost methods of polysilicon production will commercialize, providing the solar industry with a more affordable source of raw material. In turn, these cost improvements will trickle down throughout the solar supply chain, accelerating the adoption of solar energy around the world and helping the industry realize its global potential.” – Terry Jester, CEO of Silicor

“We look at disruptive change in terms of opportunity and the key opportunities we have seen over the past decade have been associated with fundamental drivers of the economy, such as accelerating urbanization, energy transition, and rapid digitization.” – Shemara Wikramanayake, Macquarie Group, Australia

“Even where the grid exists, it’s fragile: power blackouts are a major problem in many megacities. Power theft also plagues Brazil, India, and South Africa. Safe, reliable power will have a transformative effect on these countries. Not only will there be near-term benefits such as greater productivity, but we will see long-term quantum leaps in educational achievement, healthcare, and quality of life. These communities don’t have power now because our 19th-century grid is too expensive. The advent of new technologies is changing both the business models and use-case scenarios to make it possible.” – Amit Narayan, CEO of AutoGrid

“Regulation of products as complex as AI and ML algorithms is no easy task. The consequences of algorithm failures at a scale that occur within major societal functions are becoming more visible. For instance, AI-related failures in autonomous vehicles and aircraft have already killed people and attracted widespread attention in recent months,” – Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

“Retail is already deep into a once-in-a-generation disruption cycle – if you think you aren’t being disrupted, then think again.” – Brad Banducci, Woolworths, Australia


“We look at disruptive change in terms of opportunity and the key opportunities we have seen over the past decade have been associated with fundamental drivers of the economy, such as accelerating urbanization, energy transition, and rapid digitization.”

– Macquarie Group

Trust Predictions – 2020

“That’s doubly true for President Donald Trump: first in Congress with the Democrats’ drive to remove him from office (the Republican-controlled Senate will save him), then in a febrile election in November.” – The World in 2020, The Economist

“Oxford University published its Global Disinformation Order report. It shows a sharp rise in information manipulation and that its spread has more than doubled in 2 years. In 2019, 70 countries were the victims of misinformation campaigns (up from 28 countries in 2017).” – Bruno Aziza, CIO NetworkContributor Group, Forbes

“We’re living in a truly globalized world where your problems are my problems and vice versa. In many ways, we have moved from the Cold War to hot peace.” – World Economic Forum President Børge Brende

“Blockchain is, in short, a system to record transactions. For centuries, in the absence of a better way, we have created trust intermediaries to keep such records intact: banks, notaries, customs, and more. Blockchain’s promise is to replace these trust intermediaries with technology: in other words, to replace human trust with digital trust” – Adrien Ogée and Soichi Furuya- World Economic Forum

“In 2020, direct-to-consumer (D2C) companies will see email unsubscribe rates grow toward 40% and reach all-time highs. With platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Google becoming increasingly expensive, brands are going to be forced to find alternative channels to communicate with their customers.” – Leore Avidar, cofounder and CEO, Lob

“Perhaps the biggest disruptive – or corrosive – force business faces is an erosion of trust.” – Catherine Tanna, EnergyAustralia

“Solar panels and LED lights, designed for sale in rich nations, are stimulating growth in commercial off-grid electrification in India and Africa. Mobile telecommunication is being used to facilitate financial inclusion in developing countries across the world. Once-expensive medical procedures can be done amazingly cheaply. Even the financial sector is innovating in order to reach the world’s poor; as well as investors looking for opportunities that not only help them increase their net worth but also improve the world. Better financing opportunities are opening up for social entrepreneurs who build businesses to serve the poor profitably.” – Nikhil Jaisinghani, co-founder, Mera Gao Power


“Blockchain is, in short, a system to record transactions. For centuries, in the absence of a better way, we have created trust intermediaries to keep such records intact: banks, notaries, customs, and more. Blockchain’s promise is to replace these trust intermediaries with technology: in other words, to replace human trust with digital trust”

– World Economic Forum

Health Predictions – 2020

“It’s the decade of…the “yold”, or the young old, as sprightly baby-boomers hit 65. For the first time, the world will have more people aged over 30 than under.” The World in 2020, The Economist

“In life sciences, we’ll have a greater understanding of the dynamics of how our microbiome – the tiny organisms, including bacteria, that live in the human body – influences multiple systems in our body, including our immune systems, metabolic processes, and other areas. This will result in seminal discoveries related to a variety of conditions, including autoimmune diseases, pre-term birth and how our metabolism is regulated” – Mark Fischer-Colbrie, CEO of Labcyte Inc

“Human augmentation also has the potential to make the world a lot more accessible. According to Gartner Analyst Daryl Plummer, AI, virtual reality, and other new technologies will triple the number of people with disabilities employed by 2023 — leading to a brand new workforce.” – Bruno Aziza, CIO NetworkContributor Group, Forbes

“The ability to monitor cancer, the dynamic immune system, intestinal flora and pre-diabetes in real-time will change the nature of medicine and usher in a new era of human health where wellness is protected versus illness treated. As a result, fundamental shifts in healthcare will occur, causing it to become largely preventative rather than fire-fighting.” – Helmy Eltoukhy, CEO of Guardant Health

“The power of data science to move the business value proposition to predicting and mitigating disease risk rather than just treating it.” – Mark Fitzgibbon, NIB, Australia

“Regenerative medicine approaches to creating new tissues and organs from progenitor cells will expand significantly. Finally, the long-awaited ability to employ precision medicine, providing specific treatments to a specific patient, will become much more common.” – Mark Fischer-Colbrie, CEO of Labcyte Inc


“It’s the decade of…the “yold”, or the young old, as sprightly baby-boomers hit 65. For the first time, the world will have more people aged over 30 than under.”

– The World in 2020, The Economist

AI Predictions – 2020

“The US May Lose the AI Race. Nations across the world are competing to win the AI race — and China is in the lead. The country has invested close to $30 billion in AI, while US venture capital firms invested less than $10 billion in AI startups in 2018.” – Bruno Aziza, CIO NetworkContributor Group, Forbes

AI’s true strength will be revealed—removing cumbersome tasks to provide stakeholders with consistent, positive interactions that make their daily lives easier” – Zviki Ben-Ishay, Co-Founder and CEO, Lightico

“AI advancements in qualitative analyses of writing—including argument structure, relevance, and tone—will lead to the increased use of AI-based writing solutions in higher ed”—Kanuj Malhotra, President of Digital Student Solutions, BNED

“Throughout 2020, expect to see the energy around artificial intelligence and machine learning (AI/ML) shift from research into engineering, bringing an increased focus on managing the AI/ML lifecycle in production.” – Joe Hellerstein, Co-Founder, and CSO, Trifacta

“Retailers will increasingly turn to AI as their main source of marketing insights as opposed to surveys and studies. Many retailers, however, will still struggle to turn those insights derived from AI into actionable business rules for their pricing, supply chain and merchandising.” – Georges Bory, Managing Director, ActiveViam

“Artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR) and other emerging technologies have made work more accessible for employees with disabilities. For example, select restaurants are starting to pilot AI robotics technology that enables paralyzed employees to control robotic waiters remotely.” – Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

“If you thought the marketing noise around AI was loud in 2019, prepare for it to get deafening in 2020. Private companies, especially startups, will increasingly tout themselves as AI companies in a bid to capture VC dollars, regardless of what they actually offer.” – Sudheesh Nair, CEO of ThoughtSpot


“The US May Lose the AI Race. Nations across the world are competing to win the AI race — and China is in the lead.”

– Forbes

Trade War and Economic Predictions – 2020

“Countries will have to work out how to position themselves, in trade and technology, between a Chinese sphere of influence and an American one.” – The World in 2020, The Economist

“Economists generally expect [the United States] will experience a downturn . . . over the course of 2020 or early 2021,” – Sam Chandan, Associate Dean of New York University’s Schack Institute of Real Estate

“The side effects of technology that promote addictive behavior are not exclusive to consumers. CIOs must also consider the possibility of lost productivity among employees who put work aside for online shopping and other digital distractions. In addition, regulations in support of responsible online retail practices might force companies to provide warnings to prospective customers who are ready to make online purchases, similar to casinos or cigarette companies.” – Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

“More than 70% of economists think a US recession will strike by the end of 2002.” – Gina Heeb, Business Insider, Australia

“After more than a year since the US first imposed new tariffs on its trading partners in 2018, higher tariffs are disrupting business conditions, especially in the goods-producing sector,” The majority of respondents from that sector, 76%, indicates that tariffs have had negative impacts on business conditions at their firms.” – NABE President Constance Hunter, Business Insider, Australia

“Banks, especially in Europe, will battle with negative interest rates. America will flirt with a recession—but don’t be surprised if disaster fails to strike, and markets revive.” – The World in 2020, The Economist


“Banks, especially in Europe, will battle with negative interest rates. America will flirt with a recession.”

– The Economist

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“By 2024, the World Health Organization will identify online shopping as an addictive disorder, as millions abuse digital commerce and encounter financial stress.”

– Gartner predictions for 2020

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7 Shocking Predictions for 2020 and Beyond


Goldman Economist Jan Hatzius’s Top Predictions for 2020


Global Economic Outlook 2020: A Break in the Clouds


“Regulation of products as complex as AI and ML algorithms is no easy task. The consequences of algorithm failures at a scale that occur within major societal functions are becoming more visible. For instance, AI-related failures in autonomous vehicles and aircraft have already killed people and attracted widespread attention in recent months,”

– Daryl Plummer, VP Gartner

Image Credit: Image by Gerhard Gellinger from Pixabay ; References: Australian Financial Review: CEO predictions for the next decade, 10/12/2019; Forbes 9/12/19; TechRepublic, Teena Maddox, Oct 23, 2019